The decision by the current management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to embrace transparency and accountability by publishing the Corporation’s Audited Financial Statements for the first time in 43 years of its existence has significantly improved investors’ confidence in its activities, the Group Managing Director of the corporation, Mele Kyari, has said.
Last year, the corporation made good the pledge at the inception of the Kyari-led management by publishing both the 2018 and 2019 Audited Financial Statements for the first time since its establishment in 1977.
Receiving the newly appointed Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Extractive Industries and Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Ogbonnanya Orji in his office in Abuja on Thursday, Kyari said the NNPC has begun to reap the benefits of its management’s commitment to transparency and accountability in its activities.
Kyari told the NEITI Executive Secretary that one of immediate benefits of the decision to embrace transparency and accountability by publishing the annual audited financial statements has been the trust and confidence it is now enjoying through bountiful opportunities for private sector financing for its projects.
“The publication of NNPC’s Audited Financial Statements has significantly improved investors’ confidence in the corporation and was instrumental to the speedy facilitation of the financing agreement for the rehabilitation of the Port Harcourt Refinery by the African Export Import Bank (AFREXIMBANK)”, Kyari said.
“Since we opted to disclose our financial statements, the speed with which we close financial transactions has been monumental. We now close deals at a quarter of the time we used to them and that is very critical,” the GMD noted.
Reiterating NNPC’s commitment to work with NEITI to sustain the regime of transparency and accountability in the country, Kyari urged the Executive Secretary of NEITI and members of his management team to avail themselves of details of the Corporation’s operations, especially the monthly engagement with the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC), on the NNPC website.
“We have seen the enormous benefits of transparency and accountability in our operations. We are committed to continue to work with your team to promote and sustain transparency and accountability in the oil and gas industry in particular and the Petroleum sector in general,”Kyari said.
Earlier, the Executive Secretary of NEITI, Ogbonaya Orji, described NNPC as a key partner of the agency whose role in the industry stands “clearly on the orbit”.
Orji commended the GMD for the regular engagements and effective communication between the two organisations, adding that such engagements were necessary to create value for the industry.
The NEITI boss said there was need to build on the existing relationship with a view to deepening the culture of transparency in the oil and gas industry, stressing that there was no need for confrontation on issues that can be resolved amicably through regular interface and dialogue.
“When we see an agency like NNPC listening and being able to make themselves available for discussion, we will explore that option. It’s more useful to us than fighting on the pages of newspapers,” Orji stated.
He expressed support for the ongoing engagements by the NNPC on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), saying when passed into law by the National Assembly, it would help close all possible the gaps in the proposed legislation.
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