Nigeria lost $41.9 billion to oil theft in 10 years, report says

Data from NEITI’s oil and gas reports and research shows that Nigeria lost at least $41.9 billion to vandalism and theft of crude oil and refined products within ten years (2009 to 2018).

According to a policy brief by NEITI, stemming this haemorrhage should be an urgent priority for Nigeria at a time of dwindling revenues and increasing needs.

The policy brief explored the data, reviewed current strategies, and recommends a way out.

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It said Nigeria currently loses a sizeable portion of its crude oil to theft, vandalism and deferred production.

“The losses are monumental both in scale and scope. Estimates of the volume of crude losses vary across different periods, with official figures showing an astronomical increase from the earliest reported figures that this paper can reference” it said.

In 1988, Professor Tam David West, then minister of petroleum and energy, estimated that Nigeria was losing N10 million annually to crude theft.

In 2013, key officials of the Goodluck Jonathan administration put the volume of crude losses at about 150,000
barrels per day.

Audited figures published by NEITI show that this estimate corresponds to a period that was not even the peak of crude oil losses in the country.

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