A total 224 firms submitted bids seeking to be awarded contract to purchase and lift Nigerian crude oil grades for the 2016/2017 season.
At the formal public bids opening on Thursday in Abuja, Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Maikanti Baru, said the exercise was a demonstration of the transparency in the operations of the corporation.
Mr. Baru said a successful bidder would qualify to join in lifting over 700, 000 barrels per day of crude oil on offer by the state-owned oil company on Free on Board (FOB) basis subject to the execution of sales and purchase agreement with buyers.
The bids opening exercise broadcast live on a national television network was observed by representatives of the bidding companies and officials of the Bureau of Public Procurement, Department of Petroleum Resources, Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, and some members of the civil society.
The NNPC boss said the public bid opening was in consonance with the transparency and accountability agenda of Mr. President in the oil and gas industry.
‘’We do everything transparently in NNPC and also ensure fairness in all the transactions that we do. There is nothing hidden, just as you have seen today,” Mr. Baru said.
He assured the exercise was targeted at getting competitive bids from refiners, and big traders, as well as companies that have made substantial investments in the oil and gas industry, particularly in the downstream sub-sector of the petroleum industry in Nigeria.
The GMD dismissed insinuations that Nigerian crude grades were receiving low patronage in the international market, noting that the demand for Nigerian crude remained high because of its low sulphur content.
The 26 Nigerian crude oil grades on offer include: Bonny Light, Forcados Blend, EA Blend, Bonga, Qua Iboe Light, Yoho Blend, Erha and Escravos Light. Others are; Pennington Light, Agbami, Brass Blend, Abo, Oyo, Okono Blend, Amenam Blend, Akpo Condensate and Usan. The rest include: Atam Blend, Okwori, Okoro, Ima, Ukpokiti, Obe, Okwuibome, Ebok and Asaratoru.