Again, Nigeria’s Crude Oil Production Falls in September

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By Adedapo Adesanya

Nigeria saw its crude oil production falter in a tough year marred by theft as September production averaged 937,766 barrels per day.

This is a 3.6 per cent drop compared to 972,394 barrels per day for the month of August, which was below Angola’s average daily output of 1.17 million barrels.

This was disclosed in the September Crude Oil production report by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC).

The agency said Nigeria’s monthly average was 937,766 barrels per day compared to 972,394 barrels per day in August and 1,03,899 barrels per day in July.

The Nigerian government has blamed crude oil theft for the inability of the country to meet its OPEC quota of nearly 2 million barrels per day. Nigeria has not been able to take advantage of the rise in the prices of the commodity in the global market because of low production, with  the  Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC)  Limited promising to intensify its effort to fight rising crude oil theft.

The Chief Executive Officer of NNPC Limited, Mr Mele Kyari, stated in an interview this week that oil production dropped to less than 1.2 million barrels per day, adding that local importers have been asked to accept payment delays of at least 90 days.

He also stated that he was confident that a rebound in Nigeria’s crude production would allow the company to cover its deferred payment obligations and expect Nigeria to add 500,000 barrels a day to its output by the end of November, mainly by restarting activities on the Forcados export terminal and Trans-Niger pipeline.

The NNPC has so far shut down the operations of 395 illegal refineries, including discoveries of an illegal connection of four kilometres route into the sea running from its major Forcados line, which he estimates has been around for nine years.

Over the last seven years of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, Nigeria’s crude production has been rocky. In 2015 when the administration came in, the daily oil production stood at 1.748 million barrels per day, in 2016, it fell to 1.4 million barrels per day. By 2017, it rose to 1.53 million barrels per day, by 2018, this shot higher to 1.601 million barrels per day, it further climbed to 2019 1.73 million barrels per day, but in 2020, it slid to 1.49 million barrels per day, by 2021, it has fallen to 1.2 million barrels per day.

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