The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari, has said that fossil fuel would remain relevant in the global energy mix, saying contrary to assumptions in some quarters, crude oil demand would be very high even beyond 2040.
The NNPC GMD made the declaration when, Wednesday in his office in Abuja, he received members of a Higher Command Course of the Indian Army War College on a geo-strategic tour of Nigeria.
Mallam Kyari espoused the uniqueness of Nigeria’s crude oil grades as rich crude with high global demand, saying NNPC was determined to grow Nigeria’s production to 3million barrels per day by 2023 to enable Nigeria take advantage of the gap that exists in the demand-supply balance.
He emphasized the age-long bilateral relations between Nigeria and India, which cut across trade, military cooperation and international peace keeping, among others.
The GMD explained that NNPC’s mandate cut across satisfying domestic energy needs and contributing to global energy market, especially crude oil and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) deliveries across the world.
He described energy security as a critical factor in guaranteeing Nigeria’s territorial integrity and growing its economy.
“Energy security is everything in terms of national security. The recent attack on Saudi oil facility is one incident which has attracted global attention and has the potential to impact global economy,” Kyari stated.
According to the NNPC’s helmsman, understanding the relationship between energy security and global security was important, especially as developing nations strive to grow their respective economies and guarantee their territorial integrity.
In his remarks, the leader of the delegation, Brig. Gen. Sudhir Malik, said India was the largest trade partner with Nigeria, stressing that oil formed a large chunk of the trade between the two counties.
He described Nigeria as Africa’s economic power house which shares similar aspirations as India.
“We are also a growing economy. It is a mutual benefit to both nations. In times to come, we hope that these bilateral relations will continue to grow so that we will also increase the trade volumes,” he added.
While stating that India was aware of Nigeria’s peculiar security and economic challenges, the military chief, however, expressed optimism that the deep relations between the countries’ armed forces would help in addressing these challenges.