Vanguard awards

March 18, 2024

TANTITA: Rescuing economy from the jackals

pipeline

By Udeme Akpan, Energy Editor

Nigeria’s oil and gas operations are daily constrained by many vices, especially pipeline vandalism and oil theft, leading to loss of revenue and increased divestment by the International Oil Companies, IoCs that caused investment to drop by 77.3 per cent to $5 billion in 2021, from $22 billion in 2014. 

In its report obtained by Vanguard, the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, NEITI, disclosed that Nigeria lost 619.7 million barrels of crude oil valued at $46.16 Billion or N16.25Trillion in twelve years from (2009 to 2020). The losses were from theft and sabotage, based on information and data provided by an average of eight companies covered by the NEITI process over the years. 

A breakdown of the losses shows that in 2009 when NEITI commenced reporting crude oil theft, Nigeria lost 69.49 million barrels valued at $4.31billion. The figures for 2010, 2011 and 2012 revealed that 28.31 million, 38.61million and 51.58 million barrels, valued at $2.29billion, $ $4.39 billion and $5.82billion were lost respectively. 

The NEITI oil & gas industry reports for 2013 to 2020 also showed that the losses to crude oil theft did not abate as 78.30 million barrels valued at $8.55 billion were lost in 2013 alone. The years 2014 and 2015 witnessed combined losses of 67.29 million barrels valued at $ 5.57 billion. 

According to the NEITI reports, 2016 recorded the highest losses of 101.05 million barrels which were valued at $ 4.42 billion. 

Between 2017 & 2020, the NEITI reports indicated losses of 36.46million barrels ($1.99 billion) in 2017, 53.281 ($3.837billion) in 2018, 42.248 million barrels ($2.772billion) in 2019 and 53.056 million barrels ($2.21billion) in 2020. The combined value of these losses is 619.7 million barrels amounting to $ 46.16 billion over 12 years. 

NEITI lamented that it was regrettable that at a time when Nigeria’s economy is largely dependent on oil revenues, some Nigerians would choose to collude with foreign nationals to steal and sabotage the main sources of revenue for the federation. 

This and other factors compelled former President Muhammadu Buhari to award the federal government pipeline security contract to Tantita Security Service Nigeria Limited, targeted at ensuring that the nation’s oil and gas pipelines are well-secured in the Niger Delta. 

Similarly, based on the performance of the company, President Bola Tinubu has also been encouraged to renew the contract, thus enabling Tantita Security Service Nigeria Limited to continue its security operations in the oil-rich region. 

However, the efforts have paid off as Nigeria’s average rig count, an index of measuring activities in the upstream sector, rose year-on-year, YoY by 62 per cent to 15 between June and October 2023, compared to 9 recorded in the corresponding period of 2022, according to data Vanguard obtained from the Monthly Oil Market Reports of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC. 

The breakdown of the data, which was collated to indicate if the industry made progress under the leadership of President Bola Tinubu or not put Nigeria’s rig count at 16, 14,18,15 and 13 in June, July, August, September and October 2023, respectively. 

This showed a remarkable improvement compared to the 11, 11, 10, 7 and 8, recorded in June, July, August, September and October 2022, respectively. 

Also, on YoY, the nation’s oil output rose by 23.2 per cent to an average of 1.2 million bpd between June and October 2023, from one million bpd, recorded in the corresponding period of 2022. 

On MoM basis, the nation’s oil output also rose by 0.3 per cent to 1.4 million bpd in October 2023, from 1.3 million recorded in September 2023, meaning that when condensate, which Nigeria can produce between 300,000 bpd and 400,000 bpd is considered, the nation’s total output would be more than 1.6 million bpd. 

Based on the data OPEC obtained from direct sources, Nigeria remains Africa’s leading oil producing nation and is followed by Angola with 1.17 million bpd while Equatorial Guinea remains the least African oil-producing nation with 54,000 bpd in October 2023. 

Checks by Vanguard indicated that the nation’s total oil output has further been impacted by the recommencement of production and export of Nembe crude by the NNPC/ Aiteo Joint venture. The OML 29, acquired from Shell in 2014 was previously blended with the popular Bonny Light grade and exported via the Bonny Oil & Gas Terminal. 

Already, two cargoes of 950,000 barrels each of the Nembe Crude Oil grade have since been exported to France and the Netherlands, thus signaling the beginning of activities at the Nembe Crude Oil Export Terminal, NCOET, which was licensed in line with the extant laws and Crude Oil Terminal establishment regulations. 

These would not have been possible without the efforts of Tantita Security Services Nigeria Limited which have been widely commended by many stakeholders, including a coalition of civil society organizations (CSOs). 

Rising from their monthly general meeting after an assessment of the situation in the Niger Delta region over the weekend, the CSOs, stated: “The discovery of several illegal pipelines in the creeks and the destruction of vessels at sea on a voyage, ferrying illegal crude oil out of the shores of Nigeria by the combined forces of Nigerian Security Forces occasioned by intelligence gathering and sharing by Tantita Security, is not only commendable but the right steps in the right direction.” 

This and other factors culminated in the emergence of Tantita Security Service Nigeria Limited as Vanguard .