The Department OF Petroleum Resources (DPR) has handed over the Oil Mining Licence (OML) 98 to the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), the upstream unit of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
This is coming almost one year after Pan Ocean Oil Corporation’s ownership of the asset, along with the assets of five other companies, were revoked for failing to meet up with its financial obligations to the Federal Government.
Speaking at the handover ceremony in Abuja, the Director of the Department, Mr Sarki Auwalu Said the decision to take over the asset from Pan Ocean was in the best interest of Nigerians.
“For OML 98, the decision was taken in fairness to 200 million people that they trust a company to manage their business and they trust us to ensure that the business is right and it’s optimised.
“The record we have in DPR indicated that the reserve stood at 43 million barrels for oil and we have 20 million barrels for condensate and 393 billion standard cubic feet of gas. We know that before the revocation that there is a legacy debt of oil and gas royalties, concession rentals, gas flaring penalty. This we expect to be settled by the previous venture because it’s a legacy debt.
“And that is our work getting this for the 200 million people,” he stated.
He expressed hope that every other issue involving the revocation will be solved amicably among the joint venture parties to ensure that the asset works.