The Nigerian government has launched a special fund worth US $100 million to take care of securing the credit that the oil industry of the country needs. Tagged a Nigerian Content Intervention Fund, the vehicle will be managed by the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) and the Bank of Industry (BOI).

Until now, Nigerian oil service companies could benefit from a 50 percent interest rebate on loans from commercial banks plus partial security. These were provided by the Nigerian content development fund, which was launched in 2012.

The acting executive secretary of the NCDMB, Mr Patrick Obah, said that the new fund was set up in response to difficulties cited by local oil industry players in obtaining borrowed funds for their operations. He added that the board and the BOI were dedicated to providing assistance to oil service companies that wanted to create more jobs locally, retain their revenues in country, and add value to the economy.

Nigeria’s oil sector has been deeply troubled by falling oil prices, and more recently, by a long string of attacks on oil production and transport infrastructure. Some of these attacks, though not targeting people, have ended with human casualties.

The groups taking responsibility for the attacks, have stated that their aim is to redirect a bigger portion of state oil revenues to the impoverished region of the Niger delta.

The federal government has been urged to revise the oil well ownership regulations in such a way as to give Niger delta communities a bigger share of the profits. Legislators from the southern provinces of Nigeria have stated that ” the people of the Niger delta region should possess at least 65 percent of the oil wells, contrary to the present ownership structure where less than 10 percent of the oil blocks belong to our people.”

Maureen Nzeogu
Leave a reply