Unarguably, the Oil and Gas Industry is going through tough challenges at the moment, but the resilient newly appointed Executive Secretary for the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board, (NCDMB), Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote while hinted on the board’s five roadmap see a brighter future believing the setback in the sector is a blessing in disguise if all hands will be on deck to champion a new course for the industry.
As part of his keynote address at the 2016 Practical Nigerian Content held at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, Kesiye stressed the need for delegates at the event to contribute meaningfully on how the current economic recession elicited by over dependent on the oil sector could be challenged, says a time like this only provides the nation with opportunity to be more proactive and market oriented.
“NCDMB believes the current situation provides us with opportunities to find prospects and become creative.”
“At the Board, we have committed ourselves to evolve pragmatic strategies, some of which we would be discussing in details at this conference. We have begun to take stock and review our performance since the enactment of the Nigerian Content Act in 2010 and would collaborate with the industry and other stakeholders to set agenda for in-country value addition in the next five years.”
“Coincidentally, the task we have set for ourselves is in tandem with the theme chosen for this year’s conference, Reenergizing Nigerian Content Initiatives for Today’s Oil and Gas Market.” We enjoin delegates to this year’s conference to participate actively in the sessions and offer suggestions that stakeholders would find useful especially at a time like this.”
“As has been the practice, the Borad will take feedback from stakeholders during the conference to shape its implementation strategy for maximum impact.” He stressed.
However, as part of the outcomes of the 6th Practical Nigerian Content Conference, organised by the NCDMB in collaboration with CWC, London, which drew nearly two hundred stakeholders from operating and service companies, National Assembly, Ministries, Departments and Agencies and Non-Governmental Organisations, the ES, Engr. Simbi Wabote confirmed that the Board would come up with a transparent guideline on the application and utilization of the Fund that will give comfort to the stakeholders and ensure that the intendments of the Fund were realised.
It would be recalled that, NCDF was established by Section 104 of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act 2010 for the purpose of increasing Nigerian Content in the Oil and gas Industry by addressing the paucity of funding faced by manufacturers, service providers and other key players. The Fund is pooled from one per cent of every contract awarded in the upstream sector of the industry and is managed by the Board.
“Yearnings by oil and gas industry stakeholders for easy access to the Nigerian Content Development Fund (NCDF) will soon be addressed by the new guidelines to be released by the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB).” Kesiye assured.
Engr. Simbi Wabote announced that the Board would soon unveil a 5-year road map that will chart a new Nigerian Content implementation path that will increase value addition in the industry and bring tangible benefits to Nigerians. He confirmed that the Board is reinvigorating the development of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Parks Scheme (NOGAPS) as part of efforts to domicile manufacturing of oil and gas components close to oil fields and involve local businesses in operations of the industry.
According to him, the identified sites for the parks have been acquired and paid for, while detailed design will soon begin. “We have set a timeline for every milestone we intend to achieve in the next couple of months; at least we should have one up and running to test the benefits before we replicate,” he said.
Other resolutions of the conference included the commitment of the NCDMB to set timelines for responding to documents referred to it as part of strategies to shorten the contracting cycle.
The Board also announced that it will expand its operations to the midstream and downstream sectors of the Oil and Gas industry in line with Section 106 of the Nigerian Content Act. The NCDMB also pledged to support efforts to implement Local Content across other sectors of the economy, including Power, ICT and Construction. Operators of those sectors were challenged to develop and use bespoke regulations to guide the implementation of Local Content in their industries pending the development of relevant statutes.
Participants also stressed the need for collaboration between the Board, operators and the academia to enhance Research and Development and charged the Board to pursue the adoption of select institutions under Adopt a Faculty Initiative.
With subject matter experts at their best, the 2016 PNC conference featured presentations and panel discussions with topics: National Content as a Driver of Domestic Capacity Development and Economic Growth across Sectors: Interrogating the Nigerian Content Act in Today’s Operating Environment; Nigerian Content – a Key to Reduced Cost, Added Value and Optimised Efficiency; Creating More Opportunities for Independent Producers in the Upstream Sector; Exploring International Best Practice for National Content Policy Implementation and Convener; and Increasing Access to Finance – Rejuvenating Industry Activities in the Nigerian oil and Gas Industry.
On the right of host for the PNC conferences, despite the Balyelsa state’s governor emphases at the occasion, that PNC is a birth-right of the state, the Executive Secretary has confirmed that the 2017 edition of the Practical Nigerian Conference will hold in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State that the event will be rotated across oil producing states. The Conference was held in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State between 2012 and 2015.
- Sola Omosola Akingboye graduated from Lagos State University, Ojo and also an alumni of International Institute of Journalism, Abuja. The Abuja based Media Consult is a member of NUJ, FCT Chapel; Member, Nig Energy Correspondents and affiliate of other proffesional bodies such as Believe in Nigeria Initiative (BINI); Change Agent for Positive Transformation (CAPT); OSHA Association for Industrial Safety in Nigeria. He is currently an Associate Editor and Chairman Editorial Board Informavores.com.ng.