The Nigerian government has discovered about one billion barrels of crude oil in North East part of the country, a minister in charge of the petroleum industry said on Wednesday.
The Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, who disclosed this at a news conference on the 2020 Nigeria International Petroleum Summit (NIPS) held in Abuja, however, said a lot of oil is yet to be discovered in the country.
He added that there was a need for more exploration for more oil to be discovered in the country.
He said: “The figure we are getting, the jury is not totally out yet but from the evaluation results we are getting the reserve that has been discovered in the northeast is about a billion barrels.
“Those are the kind of figures we are seeing and we are beginning to understand the geological structure of the region.”
On the Petroleum Industry Bill ( PIB), the minister said he was confident that the bill would be passed in June based on the cordial relationship between the legislature and the executive.
Sylva added: “We are banking on the fact today to make that promise on the fact that there is a very cordial relationship now between the legislature and executive.
“Today Nigerians all agree that there is a need for us to pass the PIB.
“For so long we have been quivering about the PIB, for more than 20 years. And for so long, we have not been able to attract a lot of investment into the oil sector.
“Let me give you an example, by the year 2002, our oil reserves stood at around 22 billion barrels. We were able to grow that reserve from 22 billion barrels to 37 billion barrels by 2007.
” From 2007 to now, we have only been able to grow our reserves from 37 billion barrels to 37.5 billion barrels, in more than 10 years. Why? Not much investment is coming into Nigeria.”
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