Senate President Ahmed Lawan disclosed that the 2019 Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contract (Amendment) Bill would by 2020 make Nigeria $1.5 billion richer.
Lawan, however, assured the oil firms operating in Nigeria not to be discouraged in their dealings as the law was not going to affect them negatively.
The senate president who made the disclosure after the upper legislature had sanctioned the piece of legislation added: “When we do legislation in the National Assembly, we are always mindful of the need to have a competitive environment just like we have done in this one, and when we work on the PIB maybe from January, we will ensure that it is a win-win for the country on one hand, and those doing business in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry. Bypassing this bill, Nigeria will be at least $1.5 billion richer in 2020.”
Reports have it that the red chamber had allegedly discovered a $21 billion (N7 trillion) revenue loss to multinationals which piled up in the last 26 years on account of the non-implementation of the PSC.
In a debate organized by Ifeanyi Ubah and co-sponsored by 27 others, the Anambra legislator told the Senate that key contractual agreements between Nigeria and oil majors had not been adhered to by concerned parties over the years, resulting in the huge liability.
Ubah quoting Section 16 of the law said the N7 trillion, according to him, was a sum that could have appeared in Nigeria’s account anytime oil price rises above $20 per barrel.
He expressed regret that the periodic reviews for the years 2008, 2013 and 2018 were not done and as a result, it cost the government more revenues.
Last Thursday, an amendment bill proposing penalties passed through first reading. However yesterday (October 15),the penalties for the violation of Section 16 of the Act were implemented in Sections 17 and 18.