- As OPEC forecasts demand for oil to exceed production
Federal Government has said that it is yet to grant licence for any oil bloc in the country.
It has also said that the allocation of the oil blocks would follow due process when it would be done.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Dr Ibe Kachukwu made this known yesterday in Uyo during a town hall meeting organised by the Federal Ministry of Information for states in the South South zone to appraise the performance of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
Kachukwu who was reacting to complaints that the zone has been marginalised in the allocation of blocs however assured that merit and fairness would be the prime consideration when the licence would be given.
“In terms of allocation of all bloc to South-South indigenes, since we came into position, the government has not allocated any bloc. The president has not put any emphasis into it, at all. He said he has to correct the mess before that is done.
“Since the day I resume, this President has never called me to give me the name of anybody, any Nigerian, north, south, east or west, and saying to me, you need to do some favours.
“On the contrary, his emphasis is that there should be no favour, take the right decisions, be able to defend your decisions and if you are not, you do wrong you should be held accountable to it. And that is a major change and that speaks for me the volume that I need.
“So, on the issue of oil bloc, when the time comes, it will follow very due process. I am one of those who believe that there is a need for us to see how the South-South corridor will benefit from it, that is part of giving back, that is what is going to bring the final solution to this area.” The Minister explained.
He called for restraint from agitators in the region as violence and destruction of government facilities would not bring solution to their demands.
“There is there is no theatre in the world where conflict has been resolved through battle. It doesn’t matter who is right and who is wrong. I have two main objectives in this portfolio and one is to present production, generate revenue because if we don’t, all the things we are talking about here are just a joke.
“ And I believe that massively bombing a territory is not going to catapilate solutions, never works, because at the end of the day, you are going to live with the effect of that destruction.” He said.
OPEC forecasts demand for oil to exceed production
Meanwhile, Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, forecast on Monday that the world oil market will be more balanced in the second half of 2016 as outages in Nigeria and Canada help to speed up the erosion of a supply glut.
In a monthly report, the OPEC said its current production is lower than the average forecast demand for its crude in the second half of 2016.
The last full quarter when OPEC pumped less than demand for its crude was in 2013, according to past OPEC reports.
Oil has risen to $50 a barrel from a 12-year low of $27 in January as the outages curb excess supply.
These, say OPEC, are accelerating a tightening in the market it expected to happen anyway, as lower prices finally take their toll on higher-cost supply outside the group.
“The excess supply in the market is likely to ease over the coming quarters,” OPEC said in the report, resulting in “a more balanced oil market toward the end of the year.”
Prices collapsed from $100 two years ago in a drop that deepened after OPEC refused to cut output, hoping lower prices would curb rival supply. With signs the strategy is working, OPEC at a June 2 meeting made no change to its output policy.
Attacks on Nigeria’s oil industry, wildfires in Canada and losses elsewhere pushed the level of unplanned supply outages to the highest in at least five years in May.
But inventories are high and OPEC cautioned: “Nevertheless, there is still a massive global supply overhang.”
In Monday’s report, OPEC said its oil output fell 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 32.36 million bpd in May. That is 500,000 bpd less than OPEC’s forecast of the demand for its crude in the third quarter, and 160,000 bpd below the average of expected demand for OPEC crude in the second half.
That points to a tighter market than in the first quarter of this year, when OPEC said its output exceeded the demand for its crude by 2.59 million bpd and prices hit the 12-year low.
The price drop is hitting non-OPEC supply as companies have delayed or cancelled projects around the world. OPEC forecasts supply from outside producers will decline by 740,000 bpd in 2016 led by the United States, unchanged from last month.
OPEC supply had been climbing since the 2014 policy shift, reaching its highest since 2008 in April. The output drop in May was led by Nigeria, the report said, citing secondary sources.
OPEC stuck with a forecast that world oil demand will rise by 1.20 million bpd this year.
The next closely watched report on global oil supply and demand is due on Tuesday from the International Energy Agency.