The Executive Secretary of Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB), has given reason why international oil companies are worried over the drop in capital inflows into the nation’s economy.
He attributed the development to the desire of the companies to influence government policies and increase their profit margins.
“Because they are talking about it from their own perspective, they are talking about it because they want you to remain where you were 20 years ago in terms of the fiscal regime and regulatory. Don’t forget that the IOCs are strictly business concerns and they do everything to maximise profit. So, if they can leave you where you are 20 years ago, they will leave you there so that they will increase shareholders’ returns.
“So it is business. No businessman will sit down and see your take being eroded without bringing out figures, statistics and concerns to close down your take because their home countries asked to say five years ago we made $5 billion profit from Nigeria as an example. Last year it was $1 billion, what is going on? So, they have to work to be able to show that we are trying to influence government policies, regulations so that our profit margin will remain the same in that country,” he said.
He also said despite the dwindling foreign direct investment into the Nigerian oil and gas industry, the country is getting a fair share of investment when compared to other African countries.
He added that the dwindling capital inflow should not bother Nigeria.
He said with $16billion investment in the oil and gas sector, Nigeria was getting a lot more than other countries in the Africa continent.
“Technically, if you even take that statistics and dissect it, it is not a bad number to come into Nigeria because you recalled when I made my presentation, I showed you the map of countries that were oil and gas-bearing 10 years ago and countries that are now oil and gas bearing.
“It is quite diverse. It is quite a lot. Today in the map of oil and gas, we are talking about Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique and these are countries that never had oil and gas.
“In those days, 10 years ago, the direct investment into oil and gas were coming into those countries that had oil and gas, Nigeria, Gabon, Algeria and the rest of them. But today that money is being shared with other countries. So, the statistics itself is not bad to have $16 billion out of that is not a bad number giving that other countries have been able to discover oil and gas.”