Stakeholders in Nigerian oil and gas sector have called on government to come up with laws that allow for seamless access to information and efficient exploration and production operations while allocating rights transparently.

They stressed the need for the petroleum industry to better the lives of citizens through comprehensive national strategy, clear legal framework and competent institutions.

At a stakeholders’ forum on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry and facilitated by Facility for Oil Sector Transformation (FOSTER) in Lagos, the participants lamented that the Ease of Doing Business agenda was not making the needed success in sector due to lack of regulatory framework to attract requisite investments.

They admitted that the PIB was hinged on benefits, but noted that ironically, some people were reaping from its non-passage of the bill.

The speakers urged Nigerians to insist that the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB), recently sent to President Muhammadu Buhari for assent, be passed into law before 2019.

They stressed that the incentives of the bill should be tied to politics.

LCCI president, Babatunde Ruwase, said there was need for a continuous campaign by concerned stakeholders, noting: “This will go a long way in making government realise we are serious. This is because some people are working hard to keep the status quo.”

Expert Advisory Panel, Nigeria Natural Resource Charter, Tunji Lardner, in his presentation titled, Nigeria: The Future of our Oil & Economy, stated that the country’s petroleum industry was bedevilled by weak and dependent regulators; overlapping institutional roles; environmental degradation; lack of transparency and accountability; funding constraints; political interference as well as outdated laws, among others.

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