Kon Bob-Manuel, former General Manager of Terminal Operations and Shipping, Crude Oil Marketing Division of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, has said that the inability of Nigerian vessels to meet international standards has prevented them from participating in crude lifting. Petroleum.
Bob-Manuel, in a phone conversation with The PUNCH in Lagos on Monday, said that the crude oil market is an international business and one must meet the international standard to be able to participate.
He said there was no law preventing Nigerian ships from participating in crude oil lifting.
He stated: “The crude oil market is an international business that must comply with international standards. But unfortunately, Nigerian ships have not been very prominent in this compliance. You cannot buy a product from Nigeria to Belgium and start with a Nigerian character in the operation. Maybe your radar isn’t working or you don’t have an official permit, thinking they should understand. These are some of the reasons why the oil survey was carried out by foreigners.
“It seems as if Nigerians are being prevented from doing it. It is not totally like that, but the reference is that business must be done commercially.
“But as I said, there is no law that says that no Nigerian should be involved in the oil drilling business. If you have a good boat, they will come after you. But if your ships are bad, no one will like to come to you, after all, the shipping business is very expensive. We want fellow Nigerians to participate in the multiplier effect of the shipping business. In fact, there were times when we would go to the ship to load crude oil and find out that most of the suppliers are Lebanese. We weren’t happy but if I was a Nigerian I would try to cut corners. But I think all of these things are being addressed now.”
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