Nigeria’s oil output could increase to 2.1 million barrels per day by December 2024 after the country secured $13.5 billion in investment pledges over the next twelve months from oil majors.

The companies agreed to invest a total of $55.2 billion by 2030 - including the $13.5 billion over the next twelve months - to lift crude production, according to a statement from the president’s office. 

Nigeria's oil output stood at 1.18 million bpd in August 2023, according to the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), meaning production would nearly double by end of next year.

Nigeria is the top oil producer in Africa but large scale oil theft has over the years cost the country billions of dollars, while dwindling investment in the sector has also curtailed output.

The losses from theft and a lack of new projects have reduced oil exports sharply, eroding foreign currency earnings in Africa’s biggest economy.

President Bola Tinubu has previously pledged to raise the country’s oil production to t2.6 million bpd by 2027, and the investment commitments could help deliver his promise.

The proposed investments are also expected to lead to a 100% increase in gas production by 2027, exceeding Tinubu’s campaign pledge of 20% growth in that time, the statement said.

Tinubu’s special adviser on energy, Olu Verheijen and the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, held meetings with fifteen foreign and domestic oil and gas companies operating in Nigeria to secure the investments.

Chevron, Total, Shell, Exxon Mobil, Seplat, Heirs Holdings, Waltersmith, First E&P, were among the oil companies that took part in the meetings, the statement said.

“We are faced with a revenue crisis which is impacting all Nigerians,” Verheijen said in the statement.

“Tinubu is actively seeking ways to grow revenue and forex to stabilize our economy and currency; and the oil and gas sector remains critical to our ability to do so despite current production levels falling significantly short of our potential.”

(Editing by Seban Scaria