By Michael Eboh
FOREIGN investment inflow into the Nigerian oil and gas industry rose to $291.47 million in the first six months of the year, between January and June 2017, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS. The NBS in its Second Quarter 2017 Foreign Capital Importation Report, disclosed that foreign investment inflow into the oil and gas sector appreciated by 31.76 per cent compared to an inflow of $221.21 million recorded in the first six months of 2016.
However, the report pointed out that the inflow of foreign capital into the oil and gas sector for the first half of 2017 represented a decline of 26.86 per cent when compared to the $398.93 million foreign capital inflow recorded in the second half of 2016. Giving a breakdown of the inflows for the first two quarters of 2017, the NBS noted that $101.08 million and $190.39 million foreign investment inflow were recorded in the first and second quarters respectively.
Also, in 2016, $20.83 million foreign capital inflow was recorded in the oil and gas sector in the first quarter; $200.39 million was recorded in the second quarter; while $171.63 million and $227.3 million were recorded in the third and fourth quarters respectively. The NBS report noted that shares recorded the largest amount of capital import in the second quarter of 2017, closely followed by oil and gas and telecommunications sectors, while fishing, transport, tanning and weaving sector recorded no capital importation in the second quarter of 2017.
It is expected that the figure for foreign investment inflow into the oil and gas industry would rise further when the NBS released the report for the third quarter of 2017. This is because the NNPC had a few days ago stated that it had secured $3.8 billion Foreign Direct Investment, FDI, inflow into Nigeria for four major oil and gas projects.
The NNPC identified the Joint Venture alternative financing upstream investments to include: The $1.2 billion multi-year drilling for 36 offshore/onshore oil wells under the NNPC/Chevron Nigeria Limited JV, codenamed project Cheetah and the NNPC/First E&P JV and Schlumberger tripartite $800 million alternative funding agreement for the development of the Anyalu and Madu fields in the Niger Delta.
Others, the NNPC had stated are the recent agreements executed in London last week for the $1 billon NNPC/SPDC JV Project Santolina and the NNPC/Chevron $780 million Project Falcon on Sonam, hitherto financed through JV Cash Call.
It declared that the four major investments were capable of providing incremental revenue to the national treasury by over $30 billion within the next 10 years. The NNPC further stated that the investments would serve as vehicle to fast-track the prevailing post cash-call exit era.
It noted that the arrangement would allow the NNPC to operate from the production revenue less the first line charge to government which is the royalties and petroleum profit tax.
Few days afterwards, the NNPC also disclosed that a consortium of Chinese banks had invested $250 million in the Nigerian petroleum industry.
The NNPC said the said the investments were secured from the Chinese banks, which were staking their funds in the Nigerian petroleum industry for the first time, at the recent financing agreements signed in London.
It added that the Chinese banks had made commitments to bringing in as much money as might be needed to finance oil and gas investments in Nigeria.