The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, Wednesday disclosed that the crude oil production exemption granted to Nigeria in 2016 by member countries of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC members led by the Russian Federation helped the country raise her foreign exchange reserves to $45 billion from $25 billion.

Kachikwu stated this in a podcast that was released by his office in Abuja, in which he explained how his shuttle diplomacy across member countries of OPEC resulted in the famous production cap agreement that has helped shore up oil prices in the international market. According to him, Nigeria’s request for a production cap exemption during the negotiations ensured she was able to produce and sell more oil which resulted in about $20 billion addition to her foreign exchange reserves.

He noted that Nigeria played very key roles in all the negotiation stages, as well as in leadership of subcommittees, and in crafting of the final agreement parties were then meant to sign. Kachikwu, who stated that resolving the Niger Delta problem was significant in achieving development, added that getting the OPEC to elect Dr. Barkindo Mohammed as its Secretary General has also helped Nigeria regain its relevance within the cartel.

Source: THIS DAY