The Secretary-General of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries OPEC, Dr Sanusi Barkindo has called on OPEC member countries including Nigeria to re-strategize to maintain their position in the new global energy mix, including focusing on economic diversification.
In a key note speech at the fourteenth Nigeria Association for Energy Economics annual International conference in Abuja, Dr Barkindo maintained that oil producing countries and in particular African Countries, that rely on oil and gas production for revenue must create an investment friendly environment.
He described the petroleum industry bill recently passed by the National Assembly as one that will revive the future of the oil and gas industries in Nigeria.
Speaking on the theme of the conference which focused on how the oil industry and oil producing countries are addressing environmental issues, within the context of net-zero carbon targets by 2050, Dr Barkindo regretted that concrete decision were not taken in all conference meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which he said has caused additional pressure on effort to address it.
Dr Barkindo who described oil as essential in forwarding economic advancement and alleviation of poverty regretted that energy poverty has continued to disproportionately impact millions of people across Africa.
According to him a data form OPEC, shows that an estimated forty-seven percent of sub-Saharan African have no electricity and eighty-five percent lack access to clean fuels and technology for cooking and called for their review describing them a as right of human.
Dr Barkindo maintained that the good collaboration between OPEC member countries has made it possible to accommodate both weak and strong players in the oil production industry.
The Sectary-General of OPEC commended the great OPEC leaders that have come from Nigeria including Dr. Rilwanu Lukman, for their deep and productive involvement with OPEC which runs through several decades and carries immeasurable impact.
Abuchi Nwozor reports that Alexander Novak, who is the Deputy Prime Minster of the Russian Federation and Co-chairman of the OPEC and non OPEC Ministerial meeting, also participated in the conference.