The Senate Joint Committee on the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill yesterday published a Public Notice in the Punch Newspaper, inviting industry stakeholders and the general public to a hearing on the Bill scheduled to hold on December 7, 2016 at Conference Room 0.22 of the Senate Building, National Assembly Complex, Abuja for 10.00pm daily. The announcement also invites the submission of Memoranda on the Bill which must be submitted not later than December 2, 2016.
News reaching us from the Punch Newspaper confirms that the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB), which is an unbundled version of the PIB, described by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Senator Tayo Alasoadura, as proposing “a slim, focused yet robust framework” for effective and institutional governance of the Nigerian petroleum industry, passed second reading in the floor of the Senate on Tuesday, November 2, 2016.
This speedy action on the Bill seems to confirm our earlier report of the Senate’s plan to ensure that this version of the PIB is passed before the end of the legislative sitting for 2016.
An interesting development however is the recently launched 7 Big Wins of the Federal Government, which is the government’s Roadmap of short and medium term priorities to grow the Nigerian oil and gas industry. One of the key areas of focus of the Roadmap is oil and gas Policy & Regulation which proposes two industry reform bills – a Petroleum Industry Reform Bill (PIRB) and a Petroleum Fiscal Reform Bill (PFRB). The PIRB is expected to address all governance and operational industry reform issues much like the PIGB and the Roadmap outlines an objective of concluding and passing the PIRB & the PFRB either by the end of December 2016 or by the end of the first quarter of 2017 (a seeming contradiction in the Roadmap).
The question is, is the PIGB and the PIRB one and the same? This is very doubtful. If these two Bills are two different Bills as we suspect, then there is a likelihood of the resuscitation of the supremacy battle between the National Assembly and the Presidency earlier reported on, which we fear may end up stalling the passage of the Bill if not properly managed.
It appears the Senate is finally ready to begin deliberations on the PIB as the Vanguard today reports that the PIB will lead other major issues which the Senate will next week pay serious attention to, as part of efforts by senators to reposition the economy.
The plan is to ensure that the PIB is passed before the end of the legislative sitting for 2016.
There are indications that the passage of the PIB may be nowhere is sight as information gathered from ThisDay suggests that the delay in the passage of the Bill is actually due to internal wrangling between the National Assembly and the Executive, a power play centered around which arm of government is responsible for the passage of the Bill. This is in addition to the unresolved issue of the inclusion or otherwise of the host community fund in the Bill. The report decried this debacle calling it a major embarrassment for Nigeria in view of the landmark passage of a similar Bill by Ghana’s parliament last week.
The paper went on to report that the Group Managing Director (GMD) of NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru has promised to continue with the reform initiatives started by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, and further grow the fortunes of NNPC by focusing on a 12-point agenda, which includes security of oil installations, the new business models, joint venture cash calls, production and reserve growth, growth of the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), gas development, oil and gas infrastructure, and refinery upgrade and expansion.
Between the long public holiday weekend and work commitments, we have not been able to post as frequently as we should have done. We apologise for that and will remedy that this week.
Click here for the newly published summary of Part V of the PIB, which deals with downstream petroleum (including domestic gas utilisation). We are also finalising the promised critique of the NNPC reforms and expect to have that published by Friday 24th August. Have a good week.
The Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream) of the House of Representatives today announced its Downstream Stakeholders Forum. The theme is “The Downstream Regime in the Petroleum Industry Bill: Stakeholder’s Perspective”. This is a by invitation only event and will hold on the 2nd of October. This forum is different from the public hearings that will be held by the committee after the second hearing of the PIB. Details of the forum and the relevant contacts can be found here.
Having started the week on a fiscal theme, with the conclusion to Dr. Omonbude’s tongue in cheek analysis and the link to KPMG’s fiscal article, we’ll continue with a feature article from Humphrey Onyeukwu, a Lagos lawyer and President of the Lagos Oil Club. This article will be published mid-week. We’ll also publish the Summary of Part V of the Petroleum Industry Bill (Downstream Petroleum) and end the week with our critical analysis of the proposed NNPC restructuring. Hint: we don’t like it.
Remember If you would like answers to any questions about the Petroleum Industry Bill, send an email to: questions[at]petroleumindustrybill.com. If we can’t answer your question, we’ll find someone who can! Have a good week.
Odujinrin & Adefulu’s Energy Practice Team announces the launch of its new website/blog www.petroleumindustrybill.com. The blog will publish up to date information and analysis on the PETROLEUM INDUSTRY BILL 2012 approved by the Federal Executive Council and forwarded to the National Assembly in July 2012.