By Michael Eboh
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Timipre Sylva, yesterday, disclosed that Nigeria would cut down on its crude oil production, this month and in October, in order to comply with the targets set by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC.
In a statement by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, in Abuja, Sylva, who was speaking at the 16th Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee, JMMC, in Abu Dhabi, assured OPEC-member countries of Nigeria’s commitment to meet its agreed quotas by October this year.
He said, “We have agreed to comply with production cuts of 50 per cent this month (September 2019) and 100 per cent from October this year.”
Sylva further stated that OPEC’s endorsement of Nigeria was a testimony to President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts at ensuring that Nigeria remains a stabilizing force within the organization.
“The rest of OPEC has always looked up to us whenever there are problems. Recall that as OPEC Secretary General, our late Oil Minister Dr. Rilwanu Lukman was highly influential and since then we have played a central role and have been taken very seriously by member countries,” he stated.
Sylva, who was in his maiden outing at the OPEC, described the endorsement as heartwarming, adding that it would go a long way to spurring and encouraging the country to do better.
At the meeting, OPEC commended Nigeria’s unwavering commitment to the stability of the global oil market which spanned many years of its membership of the organization.
According to a statement by the NNPC, the commendation came from the Chairman of OPEC’s 16th Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee, JMMC, Prince Abdulaziz Bin Salman, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Thursday.
Bin Salman, who doubles as the Saudi Arabian Energy Minister noted that since the 1980s when Nigeria’s late Oil Minister Dr. Rilwanu Lukman reigned at the helm of the Organisation, the West African nation’s role has been very pivotal in helping OPEC achieve stability in the oil market.
“Nigeria has always brought commitment and obligation towards the OPEC cause. I always thought of how we would have crossed the uncertainties of the global oil market of the 1980s without Nigeria,” Bin Salman added.
According to him, Nigeria’s role cuts across compliance with OPEC charters as well as mediation and reconciliation among member countries over the years.
The NNPC stated that during the JMMC, OPEC reiterated its determination to accelerate concerted action towards addressing market challenges and adapting to future developments.
While enjoining non-compliant members to fully observe their production commitments, the JMMC also underscored the need for continued commitment for the Declaration of Cooperation, DoC, in support of oil market stability on a sustainable basis.