Nigeria will start selling and buying oil and gasoline directly to cut out middlemen and curb graft, the new managers of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) announced on Tuesday, according to News 24.
In a twist of events, NNPC has cancelled the planned contract for the Offshore Processing Agreement (OPA) for which bids from 44 local and international firms have been shortlisted, AllAfrica reported.
The major policy shift fits new President Muhammadu Buhari’s plan to halt corruption endemic in the industry in Africa’s biggest oil producer. The previous administration of President Goodluck Jonathan had ignored warnings from Central Bank Governor Lamido Sanusi that some $20b in oil sales over three years was missing from federal coffers, and instead fired Sanusi.
Citing reasons that include the determination to “enshrine transparency and eliminate the activities of middlemen in the crude oil exchange for product matrix,” the Corporation in a statement announced the replacement of the OPA option in preference for what it termed a “more efficient Direct Sale-Direct Purchase (DSDP) alternative.”
This alternative allows for the direct sale of crude oil by NNPC as well as direct purchase of petroleum products from credible international refineries.