BY CHIKA OKEKE, Abuja
The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has blamed the persistent revenue and job loss in most African countries to absence of local content in key areas of the oil and gas industry such as engineering, procurement, construction and fabrication, installation, commissioning, and operation.
Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote stated this on Tuesday at the ongoing 2023 Africa Energy Week in Cape Town, South Africa.
He harped on the need for African nations seeking to achieve economic prosperity to develop local capabilities to process, utilise and export their resources as a means of activating growth and development.
Wabote insisted that poor utilisation of local content affected expenditure in the oil and gas sector, adding that it is expedient for oil-producing nations to develop local capabilities that would retain its spendings.
The ES noted that it is essential for African countries to make local content a national agenda and back it with the appropriate legislation or legal framework within their jurisdictions.
This, he said indicated that local procurement, fabrication and manufacturing is a national priority such that all institutions, businesses, decision-makers, investors and citizens would accept the vision.
Wabote recalled that Nigeria started with policy directives to deepen local content practice in the oil and gas sector before enacting the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act in 2010.
He informed that NOGICD act eliminated the possibility of companies complying with local content requirements in the oil and gas sector on ‘best endeavour.
The NCDMB boss listed other strategies for enhancing local content as establishing factual data on current in-country capacities and carrying out gap analysis between current realities and the national vision.
He insisted that local content is not copy and paste, hence local peculiarities must be included into programmes aimed at enhancing local capabilities.
Wabote highlighted the importance of patronising in-country capacities and capabilities, clarifying that all policies, capacities and individuals would be frustrated if there is no outlet to engage them and receive rewards for sustainability and growth.
He explained that the board ensured patronage of local goods and services by using the ‘right of first refusal’ principle as contained in the Nigerian Content Act and various project certification and compliance monitoring tools.
The ES informed that NCDMB commenced the implementation of a 10-year Strategic Roadmap in 2018, with the goal of raising the level of Nigerian content in the oil and gas industry to 70 percent by the year 2027.
He indicated that various initiatives were put in place under five strategic pillars and four vision enablers, adding that five years down the line, NCDMB achieved 54 percent Nigerian content level against the 42 percent benchmark.
BY CHIKA OKEKE, Abuja