The exact volume of crude oil produced in Nigeria, especially at the deep offshore fields, is not known by anyone, the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) said on Thursday.
Executive Secretary, NEITI, Orji Ogbonnaya-Orji, disclosed this in Abuja during a courtesy call on the Director-General of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria, Mansur Liman.
He told his host that the exact amount of crude oil produced in Nigeria had remained unknown because of the absence of meters at wellheads and the lack of capacity to monitor deep offshore fields.
The NEITI boss stated that his agency had in all its oil and gas audit reports recommended that meters be placed on oil wellheads to measure the volume of crude oil produced across the country.
Ogbonnaya-Orji said, “We do not have capacity to go deep shores to know how much we are producing. As we speak, it is very difficult for any Nigerian to ascertain how much we are actually producing.
“This is one of the challenges that NEITI is dealing with. Because if you do not know how much you are producing how would you know how much you are expected to earn?”
He added, “The companies that go deep shore that are involved on offshore exploration, none of them are indigenous Nigerian companies and they cannot really protect the interest of the country as much as Nigerians can.
“But we must concede to those companies, they are doing a great job here because without them there will be no oil industry.”
The NEITI helmsman described his visit to FRCN as a home coming, having worked there as a journalist for many years.
On his part, Liman said it was important for the media to support the reform of the sector so as to ensure that Nigerians benefit more from the oil sector.