BEVERLY HILLS, September 21, (THEWILL) – The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, has insisted that there is no plan to divest the Federal Government’s stakes in joint venture oil assets.
Sylva said the issue of divestment of government interest in JVs was not even discussed at the two-day retreat he had with directors and chief executives of the Ministry of Petroleum.
THEWILL recalls that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had said in a statement on Friday that the minister, at the retreat, listed priority areas to include the implementation of the reduction of Federal Government’s equity stakes in JV participation to 40 per cent.
The statement signed by the Group General Manager, Public Affairs of the NNPC, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, said the Minister noted that the NNPC and other departments and agencies under the ministry must key into the policy of the Ministry.
He listed other priority areas to include curbing petroleum products cross border leakages, completion of gas flare commercialization.
But the Minister, at a press briefing on Saturday at the end of the retreat, said, “I must say that it was an unfortunate piece of news.
“I read it also while I was still in the retreat and that was not discussed at all. Divestment of interest in JVs was not discussed at this retreat at all.
“There will be no divestment of Federal Government’s interest in our JVs at all. That issue was not discussed; that is not on the table.”