For failure to amend the Production Sharing Contract (PSC)Act of 1993, Nigeria is estimated to have lost about US $21 billion over the past 20 years of the implementation of the Act in the nation’s hydrocarbon resources industry.
Senator Ifeanyi Ubah made this disclosure when he presented a motion titled: “Urgent need to review and recover additional revenue accruable to the government of the Federation from the Production Sharing Contracts pursuant to Section 16 of the Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contract Act.”
Worried by the revelation, the Upper Chamber resolved to expedite action on the bill with a view to updating its provisions to boost the nation’s revenue from the oil and gas industry.
Specifically, the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, said on Wednesday that the bill would be reviewed, commencing with the first reading of the amendment bill on Thursday.
Lawan said this while declaring open a public hearing convened by Senate and House of Representatives Joint Committees on Finance on 2020-2022 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper (MTEF/FSP).
He said: “For long, Nigeria has been shortchanged and of course, we blame ourselves for that.
“Since the price of crude went beyond 20 dollar, Nigerians should have benefitted from that Act by immediately ensuring that we review that Act, where we would have gotten 50 percent of the increase in the price of crude; and we are talking about billions of dollars,” Lawan added.
“We know that the executive will be on our side. We lost about N350 billion to fund the 2019 budget, because it is not there. And even the N160 billion proposed in the 2020 budget is at risk. So we have to do everything possible to ensure that what is ours as a country comes to us.
“And we are inviting the executive side of government to work with us on this very important Act that we are about to amend.
“We expect that before the budget is passed, this Act would have been amended and signed into law by the President… because we have to fund the 2020 budget properly,” Lawan said.
Also the Senate also mandated its Committee on Petroleum Resources Upstream to investigate the reasons for the failure to review the provisions of the Production Sharing Contract (PSC) Act.