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GMD Says You Can Buy Shares through IPO with NNPC by 2024

The good times are probably here for Nigerians who want to have a slice of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). In an interview with Bloomberg, the Group Managing Director (GMD) of the government-owned oil corporation, Mele Kyari, said the public will be able to own a part of NNPC through an Initial Public Offering (IPO) that will be launched in 2024.

With the IPO, Kyari said NNPC will be better repositioned to compete with other global oil corporations and to benefit people in its host country. He said international best practices will be implemented and more people can get the opportunity to either work at the company or own shares in the organization.

“NNPC will now be operated in line with the Companies and Allied Act,” Kyari said. “The NNPC may not be able to offer its shares to the public by 2022 or 2023 due to certain bottlenecks that had lingered over the years. We are not getting ready for the IPO tomorrow; probably the earliest consideration will be in three years time. IPO really means this company is going to be profitable, it has a long trajectory; it has a short-term view of how things can be done better to align with the best practice in the industry.”

As a sign that NNPC is becoming profitable, the management declared a profit of N287 billion for the year 2020 last week. This profit-declaration would be the first in over 40 years that the company has been in existence.

At about 206.5 trillion cubit feet, Nigeria has the largest natural gas reserve and crude oil deposit in Africa, but this has not raised the standard of living for Nigerians who continue to pine away under economic hardships.

Due to insurgency and banditry in various parts of the country, oil production declined to 1.43 barrels per day last month, raising concerns that NNPC is getting behind in its capacity.

Although the Petroleum Industry Bill makes reforms in the oil and gas sector possible today, oil marketers are worried that a part of the bill gives Dangote Refinery exclusive rights to import refined petroleum products into Nigeria. The NNPC has however made it clear that it will own 20% of the ownership if it goes this route with Dangote Refinery.