The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Simbi Kesiye Wabote, has commended TotalEnergies for being the only international oil and gas operating company in Nigeria that has been taking financial investment decisions (FIDs) on major projects in the last ten years.
Wabote made the statement last week during the load-out ceremony of the topsides of the Ikike Development Project at the Saipem Yard in Port Harcourt. The NCDMBI boss also commended TotalEnergies’ “sustained investment” in the gas sector and renewable energy, adducing the firm’s commitment to Nigeria as the reason why President Muhammadu Buhari has met with its global chief executive of the company, Mr. Patrick Pouyanne twice in the last six months.
Nigeria is said to have lost about $50 billion in investment in the oil and gas sector due to the over a decade delay in achieving the announced revision of legislation guiding investment in the sector. Oil and gas firms held off making final investment decisions on various exploration and production projects while awaiting clarity on the terms which will determine the profitability of their investments. TotalEnergies however took final investment decisions on oil production projects while waiting for Nigeria to revise its oil and gas legislation.
Topside (or topsides) refers parts of an offshore oil rig which is above water; It describes the state of the oil rig while at the exploratory phase during which engineers are trying to determine if the site will produce sufficient oil. When the decision to proceed with full drilling operations is made, drilling, processing, and storage facilities along with worker accommodations and communications facilities are added to the topside to make a full-scale off-shore oil rig.
In his speech, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of TotalEnergies Nigeria, Mr. Mike Sangster said that the Total Ikike Field Development Project is another testimonial to the commitment of TotalEnergies to the growth of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, similar to the company’s Egina Project.
He stated that aside from meeting the incremental 32,000 barrels per day, the Ikike Field Development Project also aims to capitalize on lessons learnt from previous projects such as the OFON2 and OML 58 Upgrade onassuring a development with strategic fit with national context, maximising local content at sustainable cost, using simplified designs, and making economic and consistent progress towards first oil.TotalEnergies is expected to invest $500 million in Ikike.
Sangster said that Total Ikike Project was made possible through close collaboration with regulators such as the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, the National Petroleum Investment Services and the NCDMB. He added that the project has made an immense contribution to Nigerian Content through the engagement of Nigerian firms to handle the construction of jacket modules, topsides and risers in Nigerian yards and the use of Nigeria- domiciled vessels and drilling by Nigerian companies.
The TotalEnergies boss said working with Nigerian companies will boost the acquisition of technical skills by Nigerian oil services companies and create about 3,000 direct and indirect jobs.
The Managing Director of Saipem Contracting Nigeria Limited (SCNL), Mr. Walter Peviani, thanked TotalEnergies for trusting in SCNL’s capacity to deliver project on the time despite the challenges that the new coronavirus pandemic brought into the industry. He said that the Topsides fabricated by Sapiem in collaboration with local companies and other sub-contractors was an in-country platform designed to be fully unmanned and remotely operated. Peviani said this heralded a new level of technology transfer.
Mr. Gbenga Komolafe, Director and Chief Executive of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) was represented at the ceremony by Mr. Hassan Gambo, a Director in the Commission. The Group General Manager, National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), Mr. Bala Wunti, was also represented by the General Manager, Joint Venture Operations, Mrs. Martina Atuchi.