AMERICANS hope that Nigeria would be able to overcome its current difficulties to produce more oil for export to the United States, according to the US government.
As the Americans look forward to a winter season, already at hand, concerns of increasing oil prices in the international market is rising.
Last week, the price rose to over $100 at the end of trading on Wednesday marking the first time the price closed at more than $100 this month.
Although the prices ended the week at around $98, concerns for the winter season provoked questions from US reporters at a special press briefing with reporters during the week by the newly appointed US Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs, Carlos Pascual.
The questions centered on how the US ccould get more oil supply from OPEC and non-OPEC member-nations.
The Special Envoy, whose office has just been announced by the US government last week, said Nigeria is one of the nations from where the US could get more crude oil supply and ensure stability in the international oil market.
He added that the US “will be working very closely together with OPEC producers as well as other energy producers.”
Various units of the US government, he stated, will be in close coordination with the Department of Energy, saying both the State Department and the Department of Energy “have a role and a mandate on promoting market stability in global oil markets.”
According to him, Nigeria represents a good model of how the US government is engaging the world in energy diplomacy and energy security issues.
The Special Envoy, who discussed the US government’s relationship with OPEC, observed that the US is interested in “countries that have an ability to bring additional resources on to markets.”
“That’s why we’re closely following the developments in Libya and Iraq; with countries that have the potential to produce more, especially if they could work through certain policy constraints. Nigeria is one of those key countries,” he said.
Apart from Nigeria, the US Special Envoy on Energy added that there are also other countries, “such as Brazil that have tremendous resources capabilities that could potentially come online in future years.”