Mr Gabriel Aduda, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, on Monday, said deregulation of the downstream sector would increase transparency in downstream sector of the petroleum industry.
Aduda said full deregulation would also create healthy competition among investors.
Aduda was represented at the 16th Oil Trading and Logistics Expo in Lagos with the theme: “Regulating Downstream Energy Transition in Dynamic times,” by Mr Augustine Okwudiafor, the Deputy Director, Downstream Department, Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources.
He noted that deregulation would give business guaranty to investors at the stage of conceptualisation.
According to him, deregulation will significantly reduce, if not eradicate completely, the diversion and smuggling of petroleum products across Nigerian boarders.
“All hands are on deck towards full deregulation of the downstream sector, as this will ensure commercialisation and liberalisiation of the sector.
“It will also increase investment opportunities, create more jobs and promote seamless energy transition.
“All these measures and many more will cushion the projected impact of downstream sector deregulation on consumers and the economy at large,” he said.
He further said data was key in the Oil and Gas Industry, and that a reliable and accurate data would give investors a certain level of assurance.
“Hence, government is keen and determined to harmonise all downstream data across the relevant agencies and parastatals to eradicate data variations.
“Government, through the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, its agencies and Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, is considering enhanced technologies.
“They include Machine Learning (ML), Artificial Intelligence (AI) to monitor and gather downstream data for effective policy formulation and investment guidance,” he said.
Aduda emphasised that oil also had a place in the energy transition space in the sense that oil could be made cleaner through the development and use of appropriate technologies.
He said moving the downstream sector forward to that enviable position required collaborative efforts from all stakeholders.
“I challenge you all to come along to move the downstream sector towards achieving the downstream we could all be proud of.
“As government, we are prepared to take feedback from fora such as this to guide policy formulation, especially as it affects our Oil and Gas Industry.