Petroleum Industry Leaders Across The Globe, Grace Foreign Investment Network FIN Upstream Oil & Gas Investment Meeting

Notable for facilitating Foreign Direct Investment across the Oil & Gas Sector in Global and Developing Economies, Foreign Investment Network – fIN United Kingdom, organized a virtual meeting for Leading Petroleum Industry Leaders tagged ”Global Investment Outlook for Upstream Oil & Gas Post Covid-19”. The meeting which was held on Tuesday – December 12th at 2.00 – 4.00 pm UK time, had Dr. Stuart Lake – Director Invictus Energy Australia, Dr. Carole Nakhle – C.E.O Crystal Energy London & Chike Nwosu – C.E.O Waltersmith Petroman Oil Nigeria and drew participation from four Continents, twenty-one countries, twenty Operating Oil Companies, three Investors, Government across Africa and Senior Oil & Gas Managers from Nigeria, Texas, Russia, Washington DC, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Arkansas, Abu Dhabi, South Africa, Chicago, Libya, Switzerland, Atlanta, Mexico, Oman, Canada, India, Newyork, Isreal, Ghana, Kenya, California, London, South Sudan Portugal, France, Burundi, and Cameroon.

In a welcome address, Foreign Investment Network’s Head of Oil & Gas, Wofai Samuel explained that ”Every sector has been negatively hit by COVID-19, but perhaps the Oil & Gas Industry has endured the most colossal setback, compelling Exploration and Production Companies to either halt or slow down their physical operations.

The Director Invictus Energy, an Oil & Gas Exploration Company in Australia – Dr. Stuart Lake, who also previously served as Vice President Exploration Shell Russia & Hess Corporation, & Past CEO of African Petroleum Corporation spoke extensively on the status of Global Exploration and Production. Lake mentioned that ”the price war between Russia and Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s collapse in Oil Prices and the global demand dropped by 30 million barrels of oil per day which wiped off about a decade of demand growth has made E&P activities even more challenging than previous years. In Africa, we’ve seen a lot of spendings go down. Final investment decisions that were planned on many projects haven’t actually been executed this year. We’ve also seen production down with the NOCs, particularly our OPEC members. It’s been a very challenging year for everyone irrespective of race or nationality.

We’ve seen big write-downs across the world but luckily in Australia, we’ve seen prices recover and investment sentiments improve substantially. We still expect the M&A field to keep increasing, there’s a lot of companies with debt on their books that have to be addressed, he concluded. On E&P investments in Africa, He explained that Invictus Energy is the only operator on ground in Zimbabwe with exploration assets, having taken over from Mobil”.

The CEO Waltersmith Petroman Oil Limited, Nigeria’s frontline Independent Upstream Exploration & Production Company, Engr. Chikezie Nwosu mentioned the biggest challenge to Petroleum investments across the continent of Africa to be the regressive nature of some policies. ”I know the government has reduced taxes but it doesn’t necessarily affect the kind of Foreign Direct Investment that you need. When an investor comes in, he is first faced with the Fiscal nature of the regime as they are to pay higher royalties.

There should be no royalty on the gas until we get our gas business and market in place, even then we shouldn’t be too keen to raise more government revenue through taxes. In the downstream and modular refineries, the government has to get involved in the Crude fixed-up supply process with other producers. The refining margins so far, are very low. Lastly, Government needs to implement policies that at the very minimum gas purchase and crude oil fixed stock for domestic consumption is priced in Nigeria’s local currency, Naira.

Dr. Carole Nakhle, CEO Crystal Energy London, started the conversation by stating that ”like any other producing country, investment has been badly affected in the UK. There’s an additional challenge in the UK North Sea which is where the UK gets its oil and gas out of shore. That adds to the challenge for investors because investors usually look for substantial growth, size, big discoveries and the chances of this happening in the UK North sea are smaller and smaller as time passes”. In her opinion, the UK has three very attractive features:

Long-standing positive cooperation and collaboration between the industry and the government. Interestingly there is no National Oil Company. The tax system that is applied to oil companies is pure profit-based, which means if you don’t make a profit, you don’t pay anything. For example, in Nigeria, you have a lot of royalty and revenue-based instruments which means irrespective of your profitability you end up paying taxes on each barrel you produce. Availability of infrastructure in the UK eases the pressure of cost and technical aspects of investment.

Engr. Henry Ikem Obi, Immediate past COO of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Past Director Exxon Mobil & Current Board Member – Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas, reiterated that Waltersmith Petroman Oil’s delivery of Nigeria’s first modular refinery would eliminate import and increase local availability.

”The realization of the refinery roadmap will ultimately lead us to become a net exporter of petroleum products not only to our neighboring countries but to the worldwide market. This modular refinery is the largest commissioned modular refinery in the country today”. he concluded.

Present and Listening in on the event were: The Chief of staff to Nigeria’s Honorable Minister of Petroleum Resources represented by the STA to the Honorable Minister of Petroleum – Mr. Ugbizi Ogar, Director EMEA – Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Division Manager Nigeria & West Africa Schlumberger – Prince Abangwu, Chairman Foreign Investment Network – Yinka Fayomi, Business Unit Advisor Chevron Texas – Lanre Badmus, Secretary General-Global Chamber Of Commerce & Industry India – Er. Aashish Gupta, Edem Dakpazu – Investment Principal Future Energy Fund Chevron,  Theeb Alotaibi – Business Development Acting Manager at General Authority of Civil Aviation – Saudi Arabia, Oil & Gas Operations African Leadership Magazine – Arvy Nahar,

Octavio Pastrana – Senior Advisor of the Board of CaribX Mexico, Simeon Tor-Agbidye – Senior Project Manager Baker Hughes Canada, Kingsley Ajie Commercial Manager Niger Delta Exploration & Production Company, Head of Development Energinet Denmark – Søren Juel Hansen,  Thabo Manana – ENGIE Africa, Business Opportunity Manager Shell – Oladayo Fakunle, Past CEO Neconde Energy Limited – Malije Okoye, Femi Ogunsanwo – CEO Integral Energy California, Suresh Khairwar – Partner Intl Risk Consultants Insurance Brokers Private Limited India, Managing Partner – Aylin Global India – shibam Sarbswa, Michael Faniran – Senior Manager Energy Accenture, Group Chief Commercial Officer – Dangote  Industries Limited, Rivers State Bureau On Public Procurement, Manager External & Government Relations Waltersmith Petroman Oil – eriye onagoruwa,Head of Treasury – Jagal, Kamal Khiani General Manager at VAHN-TECH Canada, Senior First Officer – SalamAir – Oman, Director Castleman Consulting London – Edward Voelcker, Field Sales Manager Nestle Nigeria – Yusuf Adesina, Nigeria’s past Ambassador to the Principality of Monaco & France – Amb. Akin Fayomi, Seongshik Kim – CEO Global E&R Partners – South Korea, Abby Fayomi – Consultant World Bank Multi-Sectoral Crisis Recovery Project – Washington, Past senior construction manager shell Nigeria – Oladeji Olawale, Leslie Abbey – Deputy Executive Director & Chief Operating Officer at Covenant House New York, Jean-Claude K Head of the Sustainable Development Department, International & Comparative Law Research Center Russia,  Nataly Cordova, Consulting Lawyer Oil and Gas Sector Tel Aviv, Deepwater OBO Advisor ExxonMobil – Olakunle Olatunde.

Also present were officials from:

Rainoil Limited, Dangote Oil Refining Company, Eni, Total, OVH Energy, Department of Petroleum Resources Nigeria, Nigerian Investment Promotion Council, National Petroleum Investment Management Services, Price Water Coopers PwC, Sahara Group, AOS Orwell, Mena Energy, Intels Nigeria, Addax Petroleum, Seplat Petroleum, Forte Upstream Services Limited, Naphthali & Naphtali PM Limited, Waltersmith Petroman Oil, Shell Petroleum, Dangote Refineries, Aquarian Oil, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Iskagas Egypt, Stratagem Energy Management Company, M.D Tomsey Engineering,  NNPC, British Council, Bell Oil & Gas,  AOS Orwell Limited, Anavim Advisory France, United States Army Corp of engineers, Moeti Collen Kgari – Channel Partner – Airly South Africa, Laser Engineering & Resources Limited, GMT Energy Resources Limited, Alkanes Petroleum, Qinetiq, Ntansa Ghana, NLNG,  Sergofs Energy Services, Tectonic Oil Tools, Boaz Capital Services & Amojos Consulting.

Wofai Samuel concluded by announcing Foreign Investment’s next Oil & Gas meeting to be slated for April 2021.

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