Mr Auwalu Sarki, DPR boss

The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has said the federal government’s plan to increase the nation’s oil and gas reserves is still on course.

The DPR which gave the assurance in a statement issued on Tuesday by Paul Osu, its head of public affairs, noted that the national aspiration of Nigeria was to increase its reserves by 35 percent from 36.91 billion barrels to 50 billion barrels in the short to midterm.

He said the government, with the aid of strategic policies and programmes, was also targeting increasing Nigeria’s proven gas reserves from 206.53tcf to 250tcf, NAN reported.

Osu said the strategic focus for the upstream sector of the petroleum industry includes bid rounds, reserve growth, increased production and reduction of production cost per barrel.

According to him, majority of the companies that won the bid for the nation’s 57 marginal oilfields, had paid their signature bonuses to the federal government.

He explained that about 600,000 barrels of crude oil per day will be added to Nigeria’s production volume when the oilfields begin production within the next few years.

Osu said the government was also looking at increasing frontier exploration activities, which had been given a boost by the recent signing of the Petroleum Industry Act, by President Muhammadu Buhari.

In terms of increasing production, he said the DPR had initiated the maximum economic recovery (MER) strategy for the petroleum industry and will be rewarding deserving individuals and companies.

Osu said plans to reduce cost of production to $10 per barrel were still being implemented in order to attract more investors to the sector.

He said the DPR will continue to create opportunities for investors and stakeholders in the oil and gas industry, as well as enable the successes of businesses, using its service instruments of licences, permits and approvals.

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