Nigeria, Saudi Arabia strategise ahead of OPEC meeting in December

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Nigeria and Saudi Arabia have met to strategise ahead of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) meeting in Vienna, in December.

Dr Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, disclosed this while briefing newsmen on Wednesday in Abuja after a brief meeting with the Saudi Arabian Minister of oil and Energy HE Khalid Al-Falih.

He said that the main aim of the visit of Al-Falih was to seek areas of collaboration with Nigeria and how both countries would help to ensure price stability at the upcoming OPEC meeting.

“His visit is a short one but we spent time and visited the Vice president, we discussed issues on oil output, what we are doing and how to prepare for OPEC meeting.

“The Idea is to help be a strong voice in global oil price stability,’’ he said

According to him, both ministers also discussed issues on revamping of Nigerian refineries considering Saudi’s strong and massive refineries experience.

Responding to a question on whether Nigeria would seek exemption for Crude oil production cap at the OPEC meeting, he said that it was too early to determine adding that Nigeria would continue to work with OPEC.

“We will continue to work with OPEC to keep to what we agree upon, we will make decisions that will support OPEC,’’ he said

Kachikwu noted that since the last exemption, Nigeria had come up and the production figure had been better than what it used to be.

In his Comment, Al-Falih commended the Nigerian government for its effort and said that Nigeria remained a force to reckon with in the African region.

He said that the major aim of his visit was to prepare ahead of the OPEC meeting on Dec. 6.

“Saudi Arabia and Nigeria are close culturally and socially, Nigeria is a corner stone in Africa and it’s a very important country for Africa, Middle East and the globe,’’ said.

He said that both countries apart from discussions on global market oil stability, also looked at other areas of collaboration to ensure growth of the Nigerian oil and Gas sector.

He said that Saudi was able to build its large refineries through joint Venture approach and attract financing through Foreign Direct Investments.

“I have invited Dr Kachikwu to come and see how things are done to enable him know how to structure investment opportunities in Nigeria,’’ he added.

He further commended the country on fight against corruption adding that it had helped to bring stability in the Nigerian oil and gas sector.

He reassured that he would be at the Nigerian oil and Gas summit in January 2019 to further strengthen more areas of collaboration.

“For us, Nigeria is a good country to be able to bridge Africa , Nigeria is a good country to start,’’ he added.

Posted by Juliet Ekwebelam (NAN)

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