Akwa Ibom ready to meet ExxonMobil’s condition for relocation – Governor

The Akwa Ibom State government has responded to ExxonMobil’s explanation on why it cannot relocate its head office in Nigeria, from Lagos to Akwa Ibom where it drills oil.

The company had said in a correspondence exclusively published by PREMIUM TIMES that “Mobil has three businesses in Nigeria which are managed by one Lead Country Manager. It is essential that the headquarters of each of those businesses be consolidated in one office where support services can be shared.

“Lagos offers each of those businesses a convenient and well-suited hub from which all three businesses can be efficiently conducted and coordinated by that manager.”

The three affiliates of ExxonMobil operating in Nigeria are Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (upstream), Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Ltd (upstream) and Mobil Oil Nigeria (downstream).

The argument over the years has been that Lagos, much more than any other state in Nigeria, has needed infrastructure to support the operations of large multinational oil companies like ExxonMobil, that have head offices there.

But critics slam the arrangement, saying it deprives oil-rich Niger Delta host states of huge tax revenue and job support for locals.

The governor of Akwa Ibom, Udom Emmanuel, on Wednesday said he knew what ExxonMobil wanted to relocate to the state, and said his government was prepared to meet that condition.

“I know what you want to move your headquarters to the state. If you give me commitment of 24 months, I will provide it,” he said in Uyo at an oil and gas fair.

He said the state deserves fair treatment in oil and gas business.

“Let me say here, let our losses not be the gains of other areas who had never seen how crude oil look like, let our losses not be the gains of our neighbouring countries, let our losses not be the gains of the Western world but let our gains be shared among ourselves,” Mr. Emmanuel said.

“As an oil company operating in Akwa Ibom, if you need to hire a vessel, let it be that if Akwa Ibom person cannot provide the vessel, you can take it from a Niger Delta person and if somebody from Niger Delta cannot provide then you can hire it from any Nigerian. Let our people be given a chance.”

The demands for International Oil Companies, IOCs, in Nigeria to relocate their head offices from Lagos to the Niger Delta region resurfaced recently during the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s tour of the troubled region.

During his visit to Akwa Ibom, Mr. Osinbajo directed the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, “to engage” with the IOCs “on the way forward” over the calls for their relocation.

The directive was seen as a major boost to campaigns by Niger Delta States to have oil companies relocate to their states of operation.

“Today, all those impediments ranging from lack of airport, road network, housing, and accommodation have been conquered. They don’t have any excuse not to move their headquarters to Akwa Ibom,” Nduese Essien, a former minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, had said of Mobil during the town hall meeting in Uyo with Mr. Osinbajo.

The Commissioner for Information in the state, Charles Udoh, told PREMIUM TIMES that the state government was waiting for the Ministry of Petroleum Resources to inform it of the next action after Mr. Osinbajo’s directive.

“It’s a directive that was given by the acting president of Nigeria, and so every company who does business in Nigeria is subjected to the laws, regulations and directives of the of the government of the day,” Mr. Udoh said.

“If the federal government is hell-bent on making it work in line with our demand, then I strongly believe that the federal government will sit down with them (IOCs) and make it work. I strongly believe there will be a compromise somewhere that will make all parties happy at the end of the day,” he said.


Source: Premium Times

ExxonMobil Nigeria ‘sacks’ 89 workers

ExxonMobil Nigeria has laid off additional 89 workers in a gale of retrenchments that started in the company last year.

NAN said a top source disclosed this on Tuesday during an interview at Mkpanak in the Ibeno local government area of Akwa Ibom state.

The source reportedly said 60 regular workers and 29 contract workers were affected in the latest retrenchment, involving mainly workers at the company’s Qua Iboe terminal, adding that more workers may be laid off in the next two months.

The agency reported that the retrenched workers had been paid their terminal benefits running into millions of naira.

“The amount paid is commensurate with the number of years put in by each of the affected workers,” the source was quoted to have said.

“The departments mostly affected include public affairs, general services and logistics.”

Nsikak Ekwere, one of the retrenched workers, who claimed he still had eight more years to work with the company, said he was surprised to see his name among the retrenched workers.

He blamed the retrenchment on the current economic situation in Nigeria, promising to make good use of his terminal benefits to create employment for himself.

Ogechukwu Udeagha, manager, media and communications of ExxonMobil did not respond to calls or text messages sent to him on the issue.

At least 250 workers of the company were reportedly laid off between January and November last year.

On December 15, the company’s Lagos office was shut down, following a tense impasse between workers and the management over retrenchment issues.

Oil companies in Nigeria have resorted to laying-off workers since Nigeria entered a crippling recession that has dealt a severe blow to the economy.


Source: The Cable

ExxonMobil Nigeria names Paul McGrath as new MD

Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited on Friday announced the appointment of Paul McGrath as the new Chairman and Managing Director of the organisation, with effect from March 1.


Ogechukwu Udeagha, Manager, Media and Communication, said in a statement issued in Lagos that Mr. McGrath will succeed Nolan O’Neal, who elected to retire after 34 years of service.


Udeagha said that Mr. McGrath was a senior executive in charge of project execution for ExxonMobil Development Company, based in Houston, Texas.


McGrath joined ExxonMobil in 1999 and had held a variety of technical and managerial positions in upstream and downstream operations while working in the U.K, Korea, Qatar, Australia and the U.S.


Source: NAN

Kachikwu halts ExxonMobil’s sack of Nigerian staff

Ibe Kachikwu, minister of state for petroleum resources, has halted the sack of Nigerian employees at ExxonMobil Nigeria, but until January 10, 2017.

Kachikwu met with the the management of the oil company and the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) on Tuesday at the NNPC House in Abuja.

At the end of the meeting, the union and the company, alongside the NNPC and the ministry of petroleum resources, signed a communique, which will be binding on all parties involved.

Mobil Producing Nigeria and PENGASSAN Communique Signing 1

Communique Signing

The communique mandated that “the separation programme is hereby suspended, pending the submission of the report by the ministerial committee and the determination of the issues arising from the report by the honourable minister”.

“It was further agreed that management is free to implement for non-represented employees and any voluntary cases already signed on to,” the communique read.

“The union members involuntarily impacted by the separation programme will remain on Mobil’s payrool but shall not return to work pending the conclusion of the review on the ministerial committee.

Mobil Producing Nigeria and PENGASSAN Communique Signing 2

Communique Signing

The communique also said the committee shall submit its recommendation to “not later than January 10, 2017?, hence, the strike was immediately suspended.

The communique was signed by Francis Johnson, PENGASSAN president, Udom Inoyo, for Mobil Producing Nigeria, Falonipe Amos, with the ministry of petroleum resources, and Isa Inuwa, NNPC’s corporate services chief operating officer.

Fresh oil spill hits Ibeno communities in Akwa Ibom

Fresh oil spills suspected to emanate from American giant oil facility- ExxonMobil have hit more than 10 communities situated on the Ibeno shoreline in Akwa Ibom.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, a youth leader in the community, Godwin Robert, secretary of Ulok Ulok People’s Assembly, lamented that the oil spill case was the sixth this year and is destroying the environment.

He attributed the cause of the oil spill to the recent repairs of pipeline destroyed by the Niger Delta Avengers, NDA, some months ago.

Mr. Robert expressed disappointment in the way the multinational oil company was treating the issue without regards to the hardship caused by the spillage.

He said that it was unfortunate that the spill has impacted negatively on the ecosystem in the affected communities.

“I am not surprised because the company is trying to fix Edoho pipelines destroyed by NDA. I expected this to happen because there is no how they will fix the pipeline without oil spill occurring,’’ Robert said.

He disclosed that the oil spill was traced to ExxonMobil installations located at Okposo, Atia, Western end and Eastern end of Ibeno communities.

Robert called on the company as a matter of urgency to commence a thorough clean up .

“We expect them to promptly respond by calling the necessary authorities to do thorough investigation to ascertain the level of impact and damage to the community,” he said.

He urged ExxonMobil to constitute Joint Investigation Team (JIT), to expedite action on the clean-up exercise.

Also speaking, Harry Moses, President of the group said that the communities discovered the oil spill on December13, 2016.

He said the development had caused hardship to the fishermen, farmers and people of the state, adding that fishermen are seriously affected by the oil spill.

“The problem with oil spill is that , sometimes you quickly notice where oil flows from and sometimes you don’t know. Sometimes the oil can also come from other locations.

“But this particular oil spill is from ExxonMobil facility,” Mr. Moses said.

He advised the company to urgently meet with the stakeholder s in the host communities to clean up the oil spill.

“Oil spill have affected the economy of Ibeno and the economic situation is appalling,” Mr. Moses said.

NAN reports that there has been six cases of oil spillage suspected to be from ExxonMobil facility in 2016.

The Manager, Media and Communications of Exxon-Mobil, Ogechukwu Udeagha, was not available for comments. Calls to his mobile phone and text messages were not answered.

Exxonmobil Sacks 150 Nigerian Workers

Exxonmobil has sacked about 150 Nigerian workers in what its management described as a regular evaluation of its operation as part of a disciplined management process.

But the Chairman of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), Exxonmobil branch, Mr. Paul Eboigbe, in a telephone interview with Daily Sun, said the sacking of the workers did not follow due process, and cannot stand in the face of the law.

Eboigbe said while discussions and negotiations were still ongoing, and a final agreement yet to be reached, the management unilaterally abandoned talks and went ahead to issue sack letters to the 150 affected workers.

He said the ploy deployed by the management was to exit Nigerian workers and in return bring in expatriates to take up the jobs that Nigerians were capable of executing, lamenting that the salary of an expatriate could pay the salaries of 10 Nigerians.

The union leader said a couple of sectional heads and General Managers were sacked in an undignified manner to pave way for the employment of the expatriates, saying PENGASSAN would not allow that to happen. ‘‘We adjourned the meeting to reconvene at a later date. And while waiting to continue talks, the management started issuing sack letters to the affected workers. This ill treatment cannot stand. And we will do all we can to resist it.”

On what the next line of action would be, Eboigbe said he has directed all his members in offshore location to down tools while similar instruction is being carried out at the Exxonmobil headquarters in Victoria Island, Lagos.

Responding, Exxonmobil Manager, Media and Communications, Mr. Oge Udeagha, explained that ExxonMobil regularly evaluates its operations as part of a disciplined management process and continually strives to operate its business in as safe and efficient a manner as possible.

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BREAKING: Exxonmobil Office in Lagos shutdown by PENGASSAN.

Fresh reports coming from a reliable source, has it that the Exxonmobil office in Lagos Nigeria was today shut down following a dispute between the employees union (PENGASSAN) and Mobil management on initiating an arbitrary sack of Nigerian employees without conclusive negotiations.


It is unclear whether the Union will extend the shutdown to offshore facilities but it is certain that the feud between PENGASSAN members and the Mobil Management is far from over.


It was reported that the office at 1 Lekki Expressway, Victoria Island was under lock and key as PENGASSAN members decried the arbitrary sack of their Nigerian employees.


We shall update you on further happenings as the details of this crisis unfold.

ExxonMobil Discovers One Billion Barrels Of Oil In Nigeria

Barely a week after it sold its downstream subsidiary in Nigeria, United States’ oil giant, ExxonMobil Corporation, has announced the discovery of up to one billion barrels of oil reserves in the Owowo field, offshore Nigeria.

The development is a boost to Nigeria’s efforts to increase her crude oil reserves from the current 36 billion barrels to 40 billion barrels target, which was set for 2010 but could not be achieved as a result of lack of investment in exploratory activities.
The Owowo field spans portions of the contract areas of Oil Prospecting License (OPL) 223 and Oil Mining License (OML) 139.

In a statement posted yesterday on its website, the Texas-based oil and gas company said the huge discovery has a potential recoverable resource of between 500 million and one billion barrels of oil.

The world’s largest publicly traded international oil and gas company stated that the Owowo-3 well, which was spud on September 23, 2016, encountered about 460 feet (140 metres) of oil-bearing sandstone reservoir.
According to the statement, the Owowo-3 extends the resource discovered by the Owowo-2 well, which encountered about 515 feet (157 meters) of oil-bearing sandstone reservoir.

Commenting on the discovery, the President of ExxonMobil Exploration Company, Stephen Greenlee, said: “We are encouraged by the results and will work with our partners and the government on future development plans.”
The company further added that the Owowo-3 was safely drilled to 10,410 feet (3,173 metres) in 1,890 feet (576 metres) of water.

The well was drilled by ExxonMobil affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria (Deepwater Ventures) Limited and proved additional resource in deeper reservoirs.

ExxonMobil holds 27 per cent interest and is the operator for OPL 223 and OML 139.
Joint venture partners include Chevron Nigeria Deepwater G Limited (27 per cent interest), Total E&P Nigeria Limited (18 per cent interest), Nexen Petroleum Deepwater Nigeria Limited (18 per cent interest), and the Nigeria Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) Limited, a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) (10 per cent interest).

ExxonMobil had recently announced the sale of its 60 per cent stake in Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc to NIPCO Plc, thus exiting from the Nigeria’s downstream oil and gas sub-sector.
Before the sale of its downstream subsidiary, the company had three affiliates operating in Nigeria: Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPN); Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Ltd. (EEPNL); and Mobil Oil Nigeria (MON).

Credit: thisdaylive

ExxonMobil Seeks Alternative Route To Export Qua Iboe Grade

As repairs continue on its main export pipeline damaged last month, Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil, is seeking to use an alternative pipeline to transport its Qua Iboe crude grade from the company’s producing fields to its Qua Iboe export terminal in Akwa Ibom State.

ExxonMobil’s subsea pipeline was purportedly breached by a militia group last month, forcing the company to declare force majeure on the export of the Qua Iboe crude grade, Nigeria’s largest export stream.

The Niger Delta Avengers had claimed responsibility for the attack on the company’s 48-inch pipeline, which the company denied, calling it a “system anomaly”.
Reuters quoted company sources as saying that the company later found substantial damage that would take at least one to two months to repair.

Whatever the cause of the damage, port sources and oil traders said repairs would take months, spurring the decision to try to export via a second, smaller pipeline that also feeds the platform.
“Exxon is preparing the alternate export line,” one source informed Reuters, adding that if it is successful, some exports could emerge within two weeks.

Two sources added that Exxon, and the Qua Iboe terminal itself, were not sharing details on the repair progress or export plans for fear of provoking militant attacks on oil infrastructure.
A spokesman for Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited declined to comment on the plan to use an alternative pipeline, saying: “We’re continuing to make progress, but we would not speculate on a timeline for repairs.”

Nigeria’s oil production has been impacted by militancy since the beginning of the year, with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) saying in its latest monthly report that pipeline attacks had taken out some 700,000 barrels per day from the country’s production, which was above 2 million bpd.

Read More: thisdaylive