Nigeria produced an average of 1.3 million barrels per day of crude oil in February 2023, according to the latest crude oil production status report by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC).
Specifically, the report showed that the country produced 1,306,304 barrels per day, which marked a slight increase from the January 2023 rate of 1,258,150 barrels per day.
The breakdown: A review of the report showed that crude oil produced for the period highlighted was 1,306,304 barrels per day. However, the addition of blended condensates of 51,664 barrels per day, and unblended condensates of 189,751 barrels per day, add up to 1, 547,718 barrels per day.
Not out of the woods: Nigeria has a quota of 1.8 million barrels per day of crude oil production from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). Yet, the country has still been unable to meet its quota despite recording an improvement in the reduction of crude oil theft, which was a major impediment to crude production in 2022.
During the official cutover ceremony of Nigeria’s national oil company on February 17, 2023, Mele Kyari, the Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, said that Nigeria had crossed 1.6 million barrels per day and was on its way to meeting its quota in the next 3 months, which is just around the time when the Muhammadu Buhari administration will hand over to a new administration.
However, it seems Nigeria is not out of the woods yet. So, the NNPCL has a lot to do to realize the short-term goal of increasing crude oil production. Kyari already said the oil company plans to cut costs, be prudent in commercial decisions, ensure fairness to stakeholders, and implement goals of the petroleum industry act (PIA) to attract more investments, as strategies to increase crude oil production in the country.
More concrete steps needed: As of January 2023, Nigeria was the leading crude producer in Africa. However, Angola is increasing its output and playing catch up, while Libya is taking steps to increase its crude oil production rate from its current rate of 1.205 million barrels. Libya will be ready to hold an oil and gas licensing round in 2024, its first in nearly two decades, to help increase its crude production.