The Nigerian government on Wednesday called on the Turkish authorities to look at the prospect of funding major oil and gas projects in the West African country, against the backdrop of the planned exit of major International Oil Companies (IOCs).
Speaking during a bilateral meeting with the Turkish Deputy Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Alpersen Bayraktar, on the sidelines of the ongoing CERAWeek, in Houston, Texas, the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, said Nigeria was open to the country’s investment in Nigeria.
A number of foreign oil companies operating in the country, especially Shell, Nigeria’s biggest partner in the industry as well as ExxonMobil, are planning to sell off many of its assets in Nigeria.
Sylva stated that with the planned divestments, especially from the onshore segment of the oil and gas sector, it would be worth the investment for the country.
“Now that IOCs like Shell, ExxonMobil and others are planning to divest from onshore assets. More investments in that sector would be a great opportunity for Turkey to expand its investments interest in Nigeria,” the minister said.
A statement by the Senior Adviser, Media & Communications, Horatius Egua, quoted the minister as saying that, “We are looking at the possibility of Turkey taking interests in more investments in Nigeria.”
He said the cooperation between Nigeria and Turkey remained very significant, stressing that the relationship could be extended to the energy sector and other areas of trade.
The minister added that with the new Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), Nigeria has further streamlined its laws in the oil and gas investment environment and thus making investments in the more attractive to potential investors.
He called on the deputy minister to encourage Turkish investors to come to Nigeria to participate in the new opportunities offered by the exit of the IOCs to consolidate the bilateral relations between both countries.
Sylva assured Bayraktar of good returns on investments in Nigeria, stressing that despite plans by the IOCs to divest from onshore assets, the companies were ramping up investments in offshore assets in the country.