FG earns $2 billion from sales of oil blocks signature bonus

By Abimbola Fashakin, Lagos
The Federal Government earned the sum of $2.187 billion as signature bonus from the sale of 152 oil blocks awarded between 1990 and 2006.
Making the disclosure was Mr. Tony Chukwueke, the Director of Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in a statement culled from the website of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation’s on Wednesday.
The statement quoted Chukwueke as having disclosed this while presenting a paper titled “Acreage Licensing rounds In Nigeria- The Journey so far” at a stakeholder forum in Lagos.
In the document, Chukwueke stated that the Federal Government will continue to woo investors into the country with a view to boosting the downstream sector.
The director however, regretted the recent capture of five Koreans by Niger Delta militants saying that the nation loses over 800000 barrel of crude oil due to the recent upheaval in the nation’s oil rich region.
“According to him, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) incurred about 500000bpd of the entire loss occasioned by the attack. “we are experiencing one of the most difficult periods in the history of Nigeria’s oil and gas industry. As I am talking to you, Nigeria is losing over 800000bpd. So this is a trying period for the Federal Government despite its drive to ensure that sanity reigns in the sector.”
The DPR boss further warned that if the incessant spate of the attacks is not arrested, it may jerk up the price of crude oil in the international market to an abysmal level.
While faulting the Bonga oil field operated by Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production (SNEPCO) as a shallow exercise, the director said government stood to earn nothing form the project in which it so committed more.
The Bonga project, constructed at the cost of USS3.6billion was streamed in Nov. 2005 with an initial 100000bpd. This may have jumped up in recent times.
But the director who faulted the cost of the project explained that government will soon review the contract agreement in order to realize revenue.

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