Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company of Nigeria Ltd (SNEPCo) hosted a business summit in Aberdeen, September 12, at which over 270 personnel representing Nigerian companies within and outside the country explored opportunities to repatriate skills and experience to the oil and gas industry back home. The forum, christened The Global Nigerian, is the third in Europe’s oil and gas hub, and had the theme Networking and Collaboration as a tool for national Development and Growth.
SNEPCo Managing Director, Tony Attah, said in an address: “When, in 2013, we set out with the initiative for local companies to collaborate with Nigerian experts in Aberdeen on opportunities and challenges in the Nigeria oil and gas industry, we knew this would be a game changer. Today, we can say that the game changer is beginning to take shape as Nigerians have started returning home to set up businesses.”
A representative of the Nigerian High Commission, Mr. Hassan Hassan, agreed: “This is the right time for our experts based abroad to return home to make a contribution and be part of the success story.”
The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Mr. Denzil Kentebe, commended Shell on both The Global Nigerian and Partnership Facilitation Programme and confirmed the board’s continuing support for both initiatives.
In a presentation on procedures for potential contractors in the oil and gas sector in Nigeria, the Deputy Manager, Reservoir Management and Evaluation, JV oil operations, at the Nigerian National Petroleum Investment and Management Services (NAPIMS), Mrs. Martina Atuchi, told the experts: “We are inviting you to be part of the leading economy in Africa with a lot of untapped hydrocarbon resources.”
General Manager, Nigerian Content Development, Shell Nigeria, Chiedu Oba, gave a progress report on the decisions of The Global Nigerian since the first business summit in Aberdeen in 2013. He said several Nigerians had returned home to establish businesses in the oil and gas sector, while networking had continued on a collaboration portal which recorded more than 12,000 visitors every month by the 60 registered companies and users.
The participants agreed that the return of a significant number of Nigerian oil and gas professionals could make a ‘game changing’ impact on the efficient delivery of many opportunities that exist in the upstream, mid-stream and downstream sectors. They also suggested the need for low interest rates to boost the growth of the companies.
The Global Nigerian 2015 was enthusiastically supported by government and industry leaders including representatives from Nigeria’s leading oil and gas trade organisation PETAN and UK Trade and Investment (UKTI).
Shell companies have continued to support Nigerian companies in the execution of contracts in their operations. In 2014 alone, 90% of the contracts valued at $1.9 billion was awarded to Nigerian.