Nigeria, Niger collaborate on exploration in Chad Basin, Benue Trough

Titilayo Ipinjolu, Abuja

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is to collaborate with the Republic of Niger in the area of sharing of geological data.

This is to further boost the ongoing exploratory activities in the Chad Basin and Benue Trough.

The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, stated this after a bilateral discussion with the Minister of Energy and Oil of the Republic of Niger, Honourable Foumakoye Gado in Abuja.

According to Dr. Baru, there is an understanding between the NNPC and the Republic of Niger to share data on the exploratory activities in the Chad Basin and the Benue Trough and to tap into that country’s experience.

He also disclosed that there were plans to collaborate on the possibility of having crude oil supply from Niger to the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company (KRPC).

“We plan to set up the technical team to review the possibilities of how crude oil will be supplied to Kaduna refinery. Being bilateral, there are going to be two teams as discussed by the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources and the Minister of Energy and Oil of Niger. There will be a steering committee comprising some Ministers and a technical committee which will involve the NNPC and the Nigerien Ministry of Energy and Oil and their operators,” Dr. Baru revealed.

On his part, the Nigerien Energy Minister, Hon. Gado said his visit is to discuss issues of interest especially in the Oil Sector with the Corporation adding that the procurement of crude oil for Kaduna refinery and its practicability is being worked out.

“One of the aims of this visit is to share geological information for us to draw the best profit out of the exploratory efforts,” Hon. Gado averred.

Amnesty

Meanwhile, the GMD of NNPC, Dr. Baru has said that the Federal government’s amnesty programme is critical towards ensuring lasting peace in the Niger Delta region.

Dr. Baru made this known while hosting the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Brig. Gen. Paul Boroh (rtd) in his office at the NNPC Towers, Abuja.

“The Amnesty Programme is key in restoring peace to the Niger Delta,” the GMD told Boroh adding that the Corporation remains ever committed to collaborating with relevant stakeholders towards developing the Niger Delta region.

Dr. Baru, who observed that insecurity has affected NNPC’s operations especially in the region, stressed further that with relative peace now coming back to the region, the NNPC will ramp up its oil and gas production to be able to deliver on its mandate to the nation.

Speaking earlier on the purpose of his visit, Brig. Gen. Boroh said they were in NNPC to share some of the success stories of the programme especially in terms of human capital development of the various beneficiaries of the Amnesty Programme.

According to Boroh, the Programme has trained over fifteen thousand ex-agitators in various skills and trades, adding that about 14 of them graduated with First Class from various universities in Nigeria and abroad.