Buhari Transmits PIB To National Assembly, Proposes Scrapping Of PPPRA

Joseph Bakare

President, Muhammadu Buhari has sent the Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB, 2020 to the National Assembly.

The Bill has a number of proposals which include creation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited as well as the scrapping of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC and the  Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPPRA.

Under the proposal, the NNPC Limited will be incorporated by the Minister of Petroleum, who together with his finance counterparts, will determine   NNPC’s assets and liabilities that will be inherited by the new firm.

Section 54(1, 2 and3 )) reads in part, “The Minister (of Petroleum) and the Minister of Finance shall determine the assets, interests and liabilities of NNPC to be transferred to NNPC Limited or its subsidiaries and upon the identification, the minister shall cause such assets, interests and liabilities to be transferred to NNPC Limited.

“Assets, interests and liabilities of NNPC not transferred to NNPC Limited or its subsidiary under subsection 1 of this section shall remain the assets, interests and liabilities of NNPC until they become extinguished or transferred to the government.

“NNPC shall cease to exist after its remaining assets, interests and liabilities other than its interests, assets, and liabilities transferred to NNPC Limited or its subsidiaries under subsection 1 of this section shall have been extinguished or transferred to the government.”

According to Section  53  of the Bill,  the minister shall “within six months from the commencement of this Act, cause to be incorporated under the Companies and Allied Matters Act, a limited liability company, which shall be called Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC Limited).

“The minister shall be at the incorporation of NNPC Limited, consult with the Minister of Finance to determine the number and nominal value of the shares to be allotted which shall form the initial paid-up share capital of the NNPC Limited and the government shall subscribe and pay cash for the shares.

“Ownership of all shares in NNPC Limited shall be vested in the government at incorporation and held by the Ministry of Finance incorporated on behalf of the government.”

The Bill also proposed the establishment of an agency known as the Nigerian Upstream Regulatory Commission which will be responsible for the technical and commercial regulation of upstream petroleum operations.

Section 4 of the Bill states in part, “There is established the Nigerian Upstream Regulatory Commission (the commission) which shall be a body corporate with perpetual succession and a common seal.

“The commission shall have the power to acquire, hold and dispose of property, sue and be sued in its own time. The commission shall be responsible for the technical and commercial regulation of upstream petroleum operations.”

The proposed law also recommended the creation of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority known as ‘The Authority’.

According to Section 29 of the Bill, “There is established the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (the Authority) which is a body corporate with perpetual succession and a common seal.

“The Authority shall be responsible for the technical and commercial regulation of midstream and downstream petroleum operations in the petroleum industry.”

The Bill by implication removed the PPPRA with the creation of the new agencies that will now carry out the PPPRA’s functions.

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