Nigeria loses N191bn to crude oil theft in three months

By MICHEAL EBOH

Nigeria lost about N191 billion ($1.23 billion) in the first quarter of 2013, due to drop in crude oil production, arising from incessant crude oil theft and vandalism along the major pipelines within the Niger Delta, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, said yesterday.

Also, the country is expected to lose N83 billion ($554.0 million) in the months of April and May, as the NNPC and Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited, SPDC, yesterday, declared force majeure on its 150,000 barrels of oil per day Bonny Light export, with the shut down of its $1.1 billion (N174.9 billion) Nembe Creek Trunkline, NCTL.

According to a statement by Tumini Green, Acting Group General Manager Public Affairs Division, NNPC, daily crude oil production during the period fluctuated between 2.1 and 2.3 million barrels per day (mbpd) compared with the projected estimate of 2.48mbpd.

...Militants

…Militants

She said, “expectedly, this fall between actual production and forecast in first quarter 2013 have resulted in a drop in crude oil revenue of about $1.23 billion (N191 billion) that should have accrued to the Federation Account.”

She explained that the force majeure Bonny Crude declared by SPDC in its Joint Venture with the NNPC is due to incessant crude oil theft.

The shut down, she said, is as a result of investigations which revealed 53 break points along the 97km Nembe Creek Trunkline.

She disclosed that repair work on the trunkline is expected to last about six weeks, noting that this will further reduce the country’s April and May monthly average to about 2.2mbpd and further decrease crude oil revenue that should have accrued to the Federation Account.

Green, however, assured that the maintenance work will have minimal effect on gas supply to domestic market.

She said, “we shall continue to work with relevant government agencies both at the Federal and State levels to end this incessant crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism. We have the potential to meet the national target of 2.48mbpd if this menace is eliminated.”

SPDC, in a statement signed by Tony Okonedo, Corporate Media Relations Manager, said the shut down is as a result of the incessant incidents of oil theft.

According to him, the company shut down the Nembe Creek Trunkline on Monday, April 15, 2013, to remove crude oil theft connections and investigate suspected oil theft leaks.

Nigeria lost about N191 billion ($1.23 billion) in the first quarter of 2013, due to drop in crude oil production, arising from incessant crude oil theft and vandalism along the major pipelines within the Niger Delta, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, said yesterday.

Also, the country is expected to lose N83 billion ($554.0 million) in the months of April and May, as the NNPC and Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited, SPDC, yesterday, declared force majeure on its 150,000 barrels of oil per day Bonny Light export, with the shut down of its $1.1 billion (N174.9 billion) Nembe Creek Trunkline, NCTL.

According to a statement by Tumini Green, Acting Group General Manager Public Affairs Division, NNPC, daily crude oil production during the period fluctuated between 2.1 and 2.3 million barrels per day (mbpd) compared with the projected estimate of 2.48mbpd.

She said, “expectedly, this fall between actual production and forecast in first quarter 2013 have resulted in a drop in crude oil revenue of about $1.23 billion (N191 billion) that should have accrued to the Federation Account.”

She explained that the force majeure Bonny Crude declared by SPDC in its Joint Venture with the NNPC is due to incessant crude oil theft.

The shut down, she said, is as a result of investigations which revealed 53 break points along the 97km Nembe Creek Trunkline.

She disclosed that repair work on the trunkline is expected to last about six weeks, noting that this will further reduce the country’s April and May monthly average to about 2.2mbpd and further decrease crude oil revenue that should have accrued to the Federation Account.

Green, however, assured that the maintenance work will have minimal effect on gas supply to domestic market.

She said, “we shall continue to work with relevant government agencies both at the Federal and State levels to end this incessant crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism. We have the potential to meet the national target of 2.48mbpd if this menace is eliminated.”

SPDC, in a statement signed by Tony Okonedo, Corporate Media Relations Manager, said the shut down is as a result of the incessant incidents of oil theft.

According to him, the company shut down the Nembe Creek Trunkline on Monday, April 15, 2013, to remove crude oil theft connections and investigate suspected oil theft leaks.

Meanwhile, 12 Nigerians have lost a major battle to hold Royal Dutch Shell Plc, accountable for human rights abuses in Nigeria, as the United State’s Supreme Court, yesterday, ruled that federal courts do not have jurisdiction to hear suits against foreign corporations accused of aiding in human rights abuses abroad.

The 12 Nigerians, represented by Esther Kiobel, had in 2002 filed a suit on behalf of victims of a violent crackdown who were protesting in Nigeria between 1992 and 1995, including her husband, Barinem, who was executed in 1995.

The justices of the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that a federal court in New York could not hear claims made by the 12 Nigerians, who accused Shell of complicity in a violent crackdown on the protesters in Nigeria.

In the case titled, Kiobel versus Royal Dutch Petroleum Company, U.S. Supreme Court, No. 10-1491, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the majority opinion that a presumption against extra-territorial application of federal laws applies to the Alien Tort Statute.

The Alien Tort Statute, a 1789 U.S. law, had been dormant for nearly two centuries before lawyers began using it in the 1980s to bring international human rights cases before U.S. courts.

The court did not decide the question originally before it in the case: whether corporations can ever be liable under the statute.

Although, all the nine justices agreed with the outcome, only four agreed with the chief justice’s reasoning.

However, another justice, Stephen Breyer, wrote a separate opinion in which he was joined by three other justices.

According to Roberts, nothing in the text of the statute suggests that Congress intended causes of action recognized under it to have extra-territorial reach.

He said, “The ruling leaves open some lawsuits under the Alien Tort Statute, including against corporations, as long as there is a sufficient connection with the United States. The claims must have sufficient force to displace the presumption against extraterritorial application.”

Reports stated that the ruling is a major win for multinational companies, especially those involved in extractive industries that do business in the developing world and become embroiled in local political controversies.

The reports said the ruling is likely to affect other cases, including those involving similar claims against Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto Plc over its conduct in Papua New Guinea, and against ExxonMobil Corp over its activity in Indonesia.

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