House Of Reps Assure Of PIB Passage 

Tunde Bakare

The Speaker of House of Representatives Mr Femi Gbajabiamila gave an assurance on Tuesday, that the House will in the next six months pass the Petroluem Industry Bill.

He said the House was determined to pass a Petroleum Industry Bill that will be acceptable to all Nigerians within the next six months.

Speaking when he received a delegation of the Oil Producers Trade Section of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Gbajabiamila said in passing the bill, there are two things that the House would want to do.

He said, “First, the House is determined to pass the bill within the next six months, or probably less, because the clock has already started running from the time it was presented.

“Second, the House is determined to pass a PIB that is satisfactory to all. I know it’s difficult to satisfy everybody, but we will try our best to satisfy everybody.”

The Speaker said the House will carry all stakeholders along in working on the draft legislation until its passage and asked members of the OPTS led by their Chairman, Mr Mike Sangster, to avail themselves the opportunity they have at hand to reach out to the House Adhoc Committee on PIB to make their inputs.

If the draft Petroleum Industry Bill, is passed by the National Assembly into law, then a total of 12 legislations in the oil and gas industry may be repealed.

The need to pass the bill into law had become imperative as low oil prices and a shift towards renewable energy have made competition tougher to attract investment from oil majors.

It said subject to the provisions of the Constitution, upon the coming into force of the PIB, where the provisions of any other enactment or law are inconsistent with the provisions of the Bill when it becomes law, that of the PIB would prevail.

It noted that the provisions of that other enactment or law would, to the extent of that inconsistency, be deemed modified to conform with the PIB.

Where it is not capable of modification, the PIB stated that that law would be void in relation to matters provided for in the new legislation.

The Regulations that are expected to be repealed with the PIB are Associated Gas Reinjection Act, 1979 CAP A25 Laws of the Federation 2004, and its Amendments; Hydrocarbon Oil Refineries Act No. 17 of 1965, CAP H5 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004; Motor Spirits (Returns) Act, CAP M20 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004; and

Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (Projects) Act No. 94 of 1993, CAP N124 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

Also to be repealed are Section 31 of the Oil Pipelines Act, CAP 07 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004; Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Act 1977 No, 33 CAP N123 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria as amended, when NNPC ceases to exist pursuant to section 54(3) 83(3) of this Act;

Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (Establishment) Act 2003; and

Petroleum Equalisation Fund (Management Board etc.) Act No. 9 of 1975, CAP P11 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

The PIB would also repeal Section 7, Oil Terminal Dues Act 1965;

Petroleum Equalisation Fund (Management Board, etc.) Act, 1975; Petroleum Profit Tax Act Cap P13 LFN 2004, and

Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contract Act 2019, as amended.

Also, the provisions of the Pre-Shipment Inspection of Oil Export Act, 1996 would be amended accordingly.

With respect to the Petroleum Equalisation Fund, as of the effective date of the PIB, the collection of net surplus revenues from oil marketing companies would cease, except for the collection of unpaid net surplus revenues earned prior to the effective date.

Also, the payment for reimbursements to oil marketing companies would cease, except for possible remaining payment obligations incurred prior to the effective date.

Similarly, the PIB also stated that an amount remaining in the Fund after the completion of the transactions would be transferred to the Midstream Gas Infrastructure Fund.

The Bill stated further that where the Fund is insufficient to make the payments, the Authority may pro-rate the amounts payable based on the ratio between the Funds remaining and the outstanding payables, provided that where the Fund is in a deficit, the proration shall be zero, and oil marketing companies shall have no claim as to further outstanding amounts.

Experts have said that the delay in the passage of the Petroluem Industry Bill is making the oil and gas sector unattractive to investors.

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