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FG blames Nigeria’s dwindling oil production on insufficient investment



The Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, Atiku Bagudu, on Wednesday blamed Nigeria’s dwindling oil production output on under-investment in the sector.

Bagudu spoke at the “Ministerial Sectoral Updates” in Abuja.

Nigeria’s daily crude oil production had maintained a steady decline in 2024 as it dropped to 1.23 million barrels per day in March.

The country’s production has been on the decline since the start of the year from 1.42 mbpd in January.

The figure dropped further to 1.32 mbpd in February before the decline to 1.23mbpd in March.

It however increased to 1.28 mbpd in April, which is a far cry from the government’s 2024 Budget projection of 1.78 mbpd.

Reacting to the dwindling output, the minister said the government initiated a microeconomic reform as part of the renewed hope agenda to address the root causes of low investment and revenues.

He said: “We embarked as part of the renewed hope agenda on microeconomic reform because that was what was responsible for low investment, low revenues, and our economy size was shrinking. It was too small compared to our needs.

READ ALSO: Nigeria’s crude oil production rose to 1.4mb/d in December — OPEC

“That is why we are not even producing crude oil in the quantity we used to before or as allowed by international convention, which is our OPEC quarter, because of underinvestment, whether in the physical infrastructure itself or security.”

The minister said aside from the oil and gas sector, other sectors are also experiencing underinvestment, noting that the nation’s infrastructure was not aligning with the government’s dreams.

He listed the affected sectors including education, healthcare, creative economy, digital economy, and steel.

Bagudu also advocated a macroeconomic environment to stimulate investment and generate revenues for the economy.

“Food security, despite our potential, we are underinvesting. Most of our farmers are one-season per-year farmers.

“Our infrastructure is not catching up with our dreams. Our educational system and our health system are suffering from underinvestment.

“The answer to all this is to restore macroeconomic stability that will ensure that domestic and international investors put their faith in our economy once again,” he stated.

By: Babajide Okeowo

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