Nigeria’s Oil Production Shows Further Strain

Oil ProductionNigeria’s oil production showed further signs of strain on Thursday as intruders blocked access to Exxon Mobil’s terminal exporting in Qua Iboe, the country’s largest crude stream.

Exxon Mobil said that the terminal continued to operate even as the intruders blocked staff from gaining access from early morning hours.

The incident is the latest in a string of attacks and other problems at the oil infrastructure in Africa’s largest crude producer.

Militant activity in the oil-rich Niger Delta has taken out some 500,000 barrels per day of crude oil production from other companies in Nigeria, pushing oil output in Africa’s largest-producing nation to more than 22-year lows.

Oil Firm To Ramp Up Nigeria’s Qua Iboe Crude Output This Week

exxonExxon Mobil is expected to ramp up its production of Nigeria’s Qua Iboe crude oil this week, trading sources said on Monday.

The company declared force majeure on exports of the grade late last week after a drilling rig damaged a pipeline. Sources told Reuters that the issue cut the company’s production by as much as 250,000 barrels per day (bpd).

Traders said that Exxon is expected to increase production as early as Tuesday and issue a new loading programme later in the week. Traders expect exports to be delayed by about 10 days.

Exports of Qua Iboe were scheduled at roughly 306,000 bpd for May.

Nigeria’s oil production has fallen by almost 40 percent to 1.4 million bpd because of militant attacks on pipelines and other facilities, its oil minister said on Monday.

NIMASA Tracks Hijacked Oil Vessel, MT Sampatiki

NIMASANigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has tracked an oil vessel ‘MT Sampatiki’ which was hijacked by sea pirates within Nigerian territorial waters.

The Director General of the Agency on Friday, confirmed the development to Channels Television.

Mr Dakuku Peterside said that a combined team comprising the NIMASA, the Nigerian Navy, the Interpol and others are working hard to identify and arrest those behind the criminal act on Nigerian waters.

“On March 26, we picked up information that a Liberian flagged ship has been attacked on our territorial waters.

“We immediately swung into action based on the direction from the honourable Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi. We contacted the Nigerian Navy, the United Nations Office for Drugs and Crime as well as the Interpol,” he said.

Mr Peterside explained that as a fall out of the abduction, a 24-hour surveillance team has been mobilized to patrol the waters especially off the coast of Qua Iboe and Brass where the incidences are rampant.

“As at this morning (Friday), the Togolese Maritime authorities were about to board the vessel to interview crew members to get further information that would help and aid us in locating the five crew members that were abducted within our territorial waters.

“Our idea is to shorten the response (time) whenever this kind of thing occurs, but we are optimistic that this would be the last time it would occur because we intend to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering on our waterways.

“Most importantly, we are about sending a bill after a consultation with stakeholders – a draft bill on anti-piracy activities on our waterways and we hope that would give us the framework to fight piracy.

“We also reached out to neghbouring maritime authorities and I can confirm to you that our effort is yielding results.

“We also deployed our satellite surveillance system and as we speak, we have located the vessel offshore Lome in Togo,” he said.