Why Nigeria must continue oil exploration in North-east – Minister

Ibe Kachikwu
Ibe Kachikwu [Photo Credit: THISDAYLIVE]

The Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu, said oil exploration in the North-east is for the good of the nation.

He said this during “Overview of 2018 Budget Proposal” on Tuesday in Abuja.

He added that “we have an obligation as a nation to continue to ensure that we follow through any part of the country with visible sign of oil at all.

“This does not stop the fact that massive exploration activities will continue in oil producing areas.

“We discover oil every day and we explore it and if we calculate the overall oil revenue projection for 2018, it is almost 60 per cent, so we need to expand the frontiers of oil anywhere we find it in the country.”

He, however, said his philosophy was that it should not be only the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, that should explore oil in the North-east.

He said the federal government was trying to encourage the private sector to use resources to explore oil by coming up with policies and incentives that would open up the frontiers for them to operate.

Also at the event, the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, said the nation needed to re-invent the culture of tax payment.

She said the era when people paid tax only when it was convenient for them or asked
for benefits for tax paid before doing so was over.

According to her, only 14 million people pay tax out of the 69 million working population in Nigeria.

She said the figure indicated that most of the tax payers were civil servants and other formal sector workers, while the high net individuals do not pay taxes or do not pay the right amount of tax.

Mrs. Adeosun said that the federal government would in 2018, ensure that the rest of the working populace that had not been captured would be captured on the nation’s tax database.

She also said that the federal government had not approved tax holidays for any company operating in the country, adding that companies were only given tax credits.

The budget, tagged “Budget of Consolidation’’, which was presented to the joint session of the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari on November 7 is expected to reinforce and build on recent accomplishments of the government.

Its key parameters include a crude oil benchmark price of $45 per barrel, oil production estimate of 2.3 million barrels per day and exchange rate of N305 per dollar.

The budget also has projected oil revenue of N2.442 trillion and non-oil projection of N4.165 trillion.

It has a capital expenditure projection of N2.428 trillion, recurrent expenditure of N3.494 trillion, N2.014 trillion for debt servicing and fiscal deficit of N2.005 trillion.

(NAN)


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  • Frank Bassey

    If you are saying this to please the North; you will not make any headway. The people wants the oil money invested mercilessly in their area — by any means. They will soon go to Buhari’s compound to search for oil. What happened to the NNPC and University of Maiduguri workers abducted by Boko Haram while searching for oil in Borno State? Those victims are yet to be released; we have looked the other way. If they can’t find the oil, they will force it to exist.

  • evidence

    I would have called Kachikwu a spare tyre minister but at least, spare tyres has it’s uses.
    What do you call a Minister that his subordinate wields more power than he ?
    Kachikwu, sorry is your name..

  • olabisisho

    While the advanced economies of the world are already engaged in post-fossil fuel era thinking and planning, Nigeria is devoting her scarce resources to oil exploration instead of diversifying away from oil. Saudi Arabia’s 2030 Vision is a lesson on how not reckon with vast oil resources, a sort of paradigm shift to dependence on non-oil economy in future.

  • mayGodpunishopressors

    This Adeosun of a woman is becoming a terrorist. Hear her: ” the era when people paid tax only when it was convenient for them or asked for benefits for tax paid before doing so was over”. Why should a taxpayer not ask for benefits of paid tax?. This woman is terrible!!!.

  • thusspokez

    Why Nigeria must continue oil exploration in North-east – Minister

    This is a misinterpretation of what the minister had said which is that: ““we have an obligation as a nation to continue to ensure that we follow through any part of the country with visible sign of oil at all.” — which is stating the obvious,and not a “must”.

  • thusspokez

    He said the federal government was trying to encourage the private sector to use resources to explore oil by coming up with policies and incentives that would open up the frontiers for them to operate.

    This is a very good idea as it will save the Nigerian tax payers money: Let the private investors judge for themselves if the potential return on investment (ROI) on the exploration is worth investing in or not rather than the government throwing tax payer’s money at it with no clue about outcome.