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  • Oil & Gas - News
  • Updated: December 05, 2023

FG to cancel unused oil licences

FG to cancel unused oil licences

The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum and Regulatory Commission has announced plans by the Federal Government to revoke oil exploration leases granted to companies that haven't conducted any exploration activities. 

According to The PUNCH, the CEO of the Commission, Gbenga Komolafe,  mentioned that only companies with strong technical and financial capabilities will retain their leases.

“Based on PIA (Petroleum Industry Act), the commission is focused on delivering value for the nation so only firms that are technically and financially viable will keep their leases,” Komolafe said.

Komolafe said the commission would initiate reviews of these leases and awards of new leases would be “subject to specific terms and conditions.”

The most recent data released by the NUPRC indicates that despite issuing approximately 53 exploration leases since 2003, over 60% of the prospecting licenses granted to both local and foreign oil companies have lapsed. 

Out of these 53 licenses, 33 have expired without renewal, with four caught in contract disputes. 

Although these leases haven't been automatically revoked, the regulator is now reluctant to allow companies to indefinitely retain them.

The enactment of the PIA in 2021 has granted the regulator authority to assess the technical and financial capacities of companies holding oil exploration leases.

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