Crude Oil Theft: We Shut Down 395 Illegal Refineries- NNPC
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) has said that in its effort to fight rising crude oil theft, which has seen Nigeria’s average crude production fall to under 1 million barrels a day in August, it has so far shut down its operations of 395 illegal refineries.
This was disclosed on Tuesday by NNPC Ltd MD, Mr. Mele Kyari in a briefing with the Senate ad hoc committee on oil theft in Nigeria.
Kyari noted that other discoveries include an illegal connection of four kilometers route into the sea running from its major Forcados line, which he estimates has been around for 9 years.
He also noted that crude theft by vandals reduced Nigeria’s oil production to around 1.2 million barrels per day from 1.8 million.
Kyari said “We have deactivated 395 illegal refineries; we have taken down 273 wooden boats, we have destroyed 374 illegal reservoirs, we destroyed 1,561 metal tanks.
“We have seized over 49 trucks and burnt them down; we have discovered illegal oil pits of 898 so far, and I,219 cooking sites have been taken down,”
He added that NNPCL, in partnership with private security partners, discovered an illegal connection of four kilometers route into the sea running from its major Forcados line into the sea, which has probably operated for the last nine years, citing that the illegal route does not reach the terminal.
He also noted that the activities of crude oil thieves have also shut down Nigeria’s oil production to around 1.2 million barrels per day from 1.8 million, citing that the difference it makes is huge to Nigeria’s revenues.
“To be very precise, we have never seen this level of escalations in our operations.
“The scale of oil theft, vandals that we are seeing today is unprecedented, prices of crude oil are so high in the market today, for oil thieves to operate.
“But we have put a structure of security hovering around our partners, all the government security agencies, we have set up private contractor security.
“The Brass, Forcados, and the Bonny terminals, are all practically doing zero production today; the combined effect is that you have lost 600,000 barrels per day when you do a reality test.
“But we hope to restore production to the Forcados terminal, this is as a result of the security intervention that is ongoing,” he said.
The Chairman of the joint committee, Sen. Mohammed Nakudu (APC -Jigawa) urged Kyari to install trackers on trucks lifting crude from terminals, stating that the technology is to monitor ships loaded with crude.