“Kenya is willing to learn from Nigeria, how to manage its oil and gas revenues”. This disclosure was made this weekend by Kenya’s Energy Minister, Kiraitu Murungi when he led a set of delegates to the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), and Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (NAPE) in Lagos.
According to him, Nigeria is the biggest oil and gas producer in Africa and fourth in the world and that is the reason Kenya came to see what it could take home. He further stated that,
“Kenya has just discovered oil and we are here to learn a good lesson from Nigeria. We are taking a copy of the country’s Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) so we can use it to modernise our exploration and petroleum act.
“We have to build our capacity and improve our management efficiency to make sure that oil revenues are properly well managed between the multinationals, governments and the host communities,” he said.
According to the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Camac Energy Inc, Dr. Kase Lawal, where Kenya is today, with the discovery of oil and now gas last week, they are far ahead where Nigeria was when Oloibiri was founded in 1952.
According to him, “We are sharing information as partners and they are taking the best practices on some of the places where we didn’t do too well at the beginning and they are actually coming up with a blueprint on the benefit of the country’s oil and gas sector.
“What CAMAC has done since its existence as one of the pioneers in indigenous companies in Nigeria is that we have expanded to many African countries like Angola, Gabon, Liberia and Ghana and Kenya and we are very instrumental in the local content vehicles.
“The experience with Kenya is a natural one. One that we see actually where they have done a lot of work with best practices in other countries. So, coming to Nigeria being the largest producer of oil and gas in Africa is one that essentially summed it all.
“I am also happy that the Energy Minister of Kenya is taking the Petroleum Industry Bill home to study and to form a partnership to build capacity.
“We are also talking about exchanging students going to the universities. We want to be a partner with him in educating and building skill capacities and capabilities with Kenya so that at the right time, Kenya would be capable of running its own affairs in the oil and gas sector.”
Lawal emphasized that there was no knowledge lost whenever people were talking and exchanging ideas as even Ghana spent a lot of time with the DPR looking at some of the country’s frameworks.
He attributed it to a collaboration with two countries in partnership to boost and advance the course of Africa, adding that it was something good for other countries to be doing.
The chairman said that CAMAC was looking at opportunities in terms of gas to power in Nigeria as it had a lot of gas, adding that it was producing gas reserve everyday with 42 million standard cubic feet (mscf) per day, which he said would double at this time next year to 88mscf.
“Our production is going to grow extensively this time next year. We have the reserves and we don’t need to depend on NNPC as we are looking at gas as an Independent Power Producer to feed it to the National Grid.”
Director, Department of Petroleum Resources, Osten Olorunsola, advised the Kenya delegation to really think of what the oil revenues would be used for, adding that the money would come so quickly in volumes to such extent that it would be too late to start thinking what to do with them.
According to him, “Oil and gas is a good resource and you still have other sectors of the economy to develop like infrastructure, education, health among others. All these linkages need to be very clear in terms of the relationships you want them to have on the revenues coming out of oil.
“It is absolutely essential in the business to continually build reserves because if you continue to produce and produce you might not have anything left. There must be reserve replacement to get incentives.”
According to him, indigenous companies also need to be carried along to develop the sector, stating that Nigeria did not start with that very early, as it was a major setback in the industry.
“I will advise that as Kenya is starting afresh, make sure that all hands are on deck, the government, companies, legislators, communities and others.”
Also he advised the country to do away with issue of militancy, crude theft, to boost oil production in their country.
“The lesson we have learnt right now is that Nigerians need transparency and accountability in everything we do because other African countries are also watching us and learning from us, ” he said.