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Nigeria’s State-Run Oil Co Touts New Transparency Initiative

Nigeria’s state-run oil company, NNPC, is hoping its new transparency initiative will allow it to become the “supplier of first resort” for Nigeria’s new Dangote refinery, according to its new managing director, Mele Kolo Kyari, according to an exclusive interview with Reuters.

The refinery, being build by billionaire Aliko Dangote, will have a capacity of 650,000 barrels per day, and NNPC wants a piece of it. When it is complete, it will be the largest oil refinery in Africa.

But for years, NNPC’s opaque business practices and scandals have tarnished the company’s reputation, making it a poor choice for investors and business deals.

Kyari told Reuters on Wednesday that he plans to publish an audited account of NNPC’s books, as well as a full list of Nigeria’s crude oil contract holders, as well as which firms won deals to swap oil for fuel products. Kyari hopes this new plan to improve its business image will help it to secure better deals.

 “We are going to do everything possible to make that open, the businesses open, so that people can actually predict what we’re going to do next,” Kyari said in the interview.

The first of the transparency initiatives—publishing the crude oil for fuel products list--will be published by next week. The crude oil contract holder list, however, will take longer to publish, Kyari said.

The Dangote refinery is big news for Nigeria, which currently imports nearly all the refined products that it needs.

One of the issues that is holding Nigeria’s oil industry back is the petroleum industries bill that has dragged on for almost 20 years now. Without this bill, foreign interest will be stymied. When passed, the bill will ultimately set the tone for the entire oil industry in Nigeria.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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