The Federal Government has implied that it intends to terminate the majority of licenses awarded to marginal oil field operators in 2023 that have remained inactive.
This comes more than 30 months after the government finished the acquisition of these marginal fields and notified the winners.
According to Bloomberg, this was revealed by Heineken Lokpobiri, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), while addressing at the Nigeria Economic Summit, which is presently taking place in Abuja.
Lokpobiri stated that only three of the approximately 100 licenses awarded in 2021 are functioning, and that the Federal authorities will withdraw these permits once the three-year operating deadline expires.
This is not the first time the government has cancelled such permits; in January 2022, the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) withdrew marginal oil fields issued to 33 businesses for failing to satisfy the 45-day limit for paying the signing bonus for the fields.
He said: “Only three of about 100 licenses granted in that year are operational. The government will revoke the permits once the three-year deadline for them to become operational expires. The government plans to hold another oil-bidding round soon.”