Wednesday 25 April 2018
(Reuters (Eng) 03/27/18)
LONDON (Reuters) - Global oil traders Vitol and Glencore are in talks to financially back Nigerian firms racing to buy assets owned by Brazil’s Petrobras valued at up to $2 billion, several sources familiar with the matter said. Cash is being lined up for purchases of stakes in two major oilfields in the west African country, according to the banking and industry sources. The potential consortiums including Glencore and Vitol offer the local bidders financial backing that would otherwise be hard to secure directly through international banks. For the traders, a deal would guarantee access to high-quality crude oil for many years. They would then be able to syndicate out the debt to banks. Signing...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/18)
Forty-four African countries have signed an agreement establishing a free trade area seen as vital to the continent's economic development, the head of the African Union said Wednesday. "The agreement establishing the CFTA (African Continental Free Trade Area) was signed by 44 countries," said Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairperson of the AU commission. The creation of a free trade area -- billed as the world's largest -- comes after two years of negotiations, and is one of the AU's flagship projects for greater African integration. However, the agreement will still have to be ratified at a national level, and is only due to come into force in 180 days. The full list of countries which did not sign the agreement is...
(AFP (eng) 03/19/18)
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari will not attend the African Union summit in Rwanda this week, an official statement said Sunday, in a blow to plans to launch a major free trade treaty across 54 countries. The meeting in Kigali is intended to formally launch the African Continental Free Trade Area Treaty, which Nigeria's cabinet endorsed last Wednesday. Buhari was scheduled to leave Abuja on Monday ahead of Wednesday's launch but pulled out to allow for more consultations. "Mr President will no longer be travelling to Kigali for the event because certain key stakeholders in Nigeria indicated that they had not been consulted, for which reasons they had some concerns on the provisions of the treaty," the statement said.
(AFP (eng) 03/05/18)
A trial for oil giants Eni and Shell over bribery and corruption allegations in the purchase of an offshore oilfield in Nigeria was delayed for two months on Monday. The trial had been set to start in a Milan court, but the judge said that, due to a high number of cases, it would be transferred to another chamber to avoid further delays. The trial is now set to begin on May 14. Eni chief executive Claudio Descalzi, his predecessor...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/27/18)
LONDON (Reuters) - Nigeria’s state oil firm NNPC is in the final stages of talks with two consortiums that include top traders, energy majors and oil services companies to revamp its dilapidated refineries, sources familiar with the matter said. The move is aimed at helping Nigeria, Africa’s biggest crude producer, save billions of dollars on fuel imports. Four banking and trading sources told Reuters the groups would be paid via the offtake of refined products rather than cash, putting the...
(AFP (eng) 02/19/18)
About 224 million people are suffering from malnutrition across Africa as climate change and conflicts heighten food insecurity across the continent, a top UN food agency official said Monday. The official, speaking at a conference on Africa organised by the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), said the situation was a "cause of concern" as the continent's population was expected to reach 1.7 billion by 2030. "Under-nourishment appears to have increased from about 21 percent to nearly 23 percent between...
(AFP (eng) 02/07/18)
While bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have suffered precipitous falls in recent weeks, the units remain popular in Nigeria where they make it easier to do business. On the surface, digital coins may not seem like a good idea in a country where corruption is rampant and stacks of hard cash are often smuggled overseas. Yet West Africa's biggest economy has the world's third-largest bitcoin holdings as a percentage of gross domestic (GDP), behind Russia and New Zealand, according to Citigroup. That may be because blockchain technology -- public, online ledgers that underpin cryptocurrencies...
(AFP (eng) 01/25/18)
A gigantic oil tanker arrived in Nigeria as part of a multi-billion dollar project that should allow one of Africa's biggest crude producers to pump out an additional 200,000 barrels a day. The floating production storage and offloading vessel is docked in Lagos after spending three months at sea, project partner LADOL Free Zone said in a statement Thursday. The vessel is part of a $16 billion oil project developed by French giant Total on the Egina field, about 150 kilometres offshore from the oil hub of Port Harcourt in southeastern Nigeria, a company source told AFP. The ultra-deep field was discovered in 2003 ...
(AFP (eng) 01/16/18)
Nigerian stocks have jumped to a nine-year high as Africa's biggest economy emerges from its worst recession in 25 years, buoyed by the high price of oil at $69 a barrel. The country's main equity index grew 12 percent this year in dollar terms, pushing it to the highest level since 2008, according to Bloomberg News. Investors are buying the cheapest stocks in Africa, confident that the Nigerian economy is set to recover and oil prices will stay high. "2018...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/04/18)
ABUJA (Reuters) - Nigeria has agreed a $550-million deal to buy two Chinese communications satellites and hopes to sign the contract before the end of the month, the communication minister said on Wednesday. Adebayo Shittu said China Exim Bank and the manufacturer, China Great Wall, have agreed to pay for the new satellites after Nigeria renegotiated an earlier deal that had required it to cover 15 percent of the cost. “This is a very big business opportunity ... which is...
(AFP (eng) 12/27/17)
Long queues formed at petrol stations across Nigeria Tuesday, with motorists sometimes waiting up to 24 hours to fill up their tanks, as Africa's number one oil producer faces a crippling fuel shortage. "I couldn't travel. I would have loved to travel to Osun State (north of Lagos) to spend time with my family (for Christmas), but I cancelled on that one," motorist Tope Alake told AFP as he waited at one of the few petrol stations still open in...
(AFP (eng) 12/06/17)
Two multi-million-dollar penthouses belonging to Nigeria's former oil minister Diezani Alison-Madueke have been seized as part of corruption investigations. A judge at the Federal High Court in Lagos on Tuesday ordered the apartments to be forfeited to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission until the probe was concluded. Alison-Madueke, who served under former president Goodluck Jonathan until 2015, is at the centre of money laundering and bribery enquiries in several countries. She was arrested in London in October 2015 as part of a British investigation into international corruption, and remains on bail. The 57-year-old Alison-Madueke is one of the highest-profile figures from the former administration being targeted...
(AFP (eng) 12/06/17)
Idris Anjorin believes his life changed in 2009 when he turned up for work -- late as usual -- distracted and stressed after more than three hours stuck in Lagos traffic. "I wasn't happy I came late again. A coworker who noticed my mood advised me to try a boat ride," the retired banker told AFP. "The next day, I arrived at Bayeku jetty at 6:00 am and within an hour I had made it to the office. That was...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/06/17)
LONDON (Reuters) - A Dutch law firm has asked the public prosecutor in the Netherlands to file a case against Royal Dutch Shell, its CEO and former executives of over what it says were criminal actions relating to a 2011 oilfield purchase in Nigeria. The Dutch authorities are already investigating the oilfield deal, alongside Italian prosecutors, who want to take Shell and Italy’s Eni to trial over alleged corruption on the same oilfield. Shell and Eni have denied any wrongdoing...
(AFP (eng) 12/05/17)
Around $321 million in public funds stolen by former Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha will be returned to the African country, Switzerland said Monday. The money, originally deposited in Luxembourg, was confiscated by a Swiss court in late 2014 and in March last year the two states signed an agreement on its repatriation. "In accordance with policy on repayment of national assets taken illegally, Switzerland has agreed with Nigeria and the World Bank to return nearly US$321 for the benefit of the Nigerian people," the Swiss government said in a statement. Military ruler Abacha, in power from 1993 until his death in 1998, is suspected...
(AFP (eng) 11/29/17)
From the lowest local magistrates all the way up to the supreme court in the capital Abuja, the wheels of justice can turn painfully slowly in Nigeria. Patience is a necessity when cases are frequently adjourned for want of a document, an official, a witness or even a defendant. The lengthy process -- where cases can take years, if not decades, to resolve -- often resembles a maddening, judicial Groundhog Day. But while Nigeria is not alone in having a...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/29/17)
LONDON (Reuters) - Nigeria’s state oil firm is looking to set up a $3.5-$5 billion cash-for-crude prepayment with some of the world’s top commodity traders to fund oil and gas upstream projects as well as related infrastructure, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said. Africa’s biggest oil producer and OPEC member was hit hard by the sharp drop in global oil prices in 2014 that pushed it into its first recession in 25 years. The country returned to growth-mode...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/29/17)
VIENNA (Reuters) - OPEC will debate this week whether to cap oil output from Nigeria and Libya, which have so far been excluded from supply curbs due to falling production amid unrest, two sources with knowledge of the matter said on Wednesday. The 14-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries meets on Thursday to decide whether to extend production cuts until the end of 2018. The sources said the idea was to cap Nigerian output at 1.8 million barrels per...
(Agence Ecofin 11/27/17)
The Finish Wärtsilä will build a 75MW PV solar plant in Nigeria, under an engineering, equipment supply and construction contract (EPC) concluded with Pan Africa Solar Ltd, Engineering News indicated. This infrastructure which will be the country’s largest, will be located in Katsina State, in the North of country. It should help provide power to about 1.1 million Nigerians. The construction of the plant is one of 14 projects developed by independent power producers who have signed a power purchase...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/17)
Nigeria's economy continued its recovery from recession, rising 1.4 percent in the third quarter of this year on increased oil production, official data showed Monday. The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said it was the second quarter of consecutive growth since the country emerged from recession. "This growth is 3.74 percentage points higher than the rate recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2016 (-2.34 percent) and higher by 0.68 percentage points from the rate recorded in the preceding quarter (of 2017)," it said. The agency said daily oil production rose in the third quarter, averaging 2.03 million barrels per day (bpd), compared to 1.87 million bpd in the preceding quarter.

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