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Niger Delta Crisis Cost Nigeria $4.47B In 2006

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 1/9/2007, Location: Africa

Nigeria lost $4.47 billion in oil revenue due to the crisis in the Niger Delta in 2006, Thisday newspaper reports Tuesday, citing the minister of finance. "Early in the second quarter of 2006, there was a loss of production of 600,000 barrels a day from joint venture operations. The loss was due principally to social disruptions in the Niger Delta, which continued until the end of fiscal year 2006," the paper cites Nenadi Usman, the minister, as saying. Usman said the shortfall in production led to drop of 3.2% in crude oil export projection, and 10.9% decline in tax revenue.

Attacks by militants in the Niger Delta in 2006 led to the shutdown of several oil facilities as the attackers kidnapped workers and damaged facilities. Kidnappings have continued, with militants currently holding four employees of Nigeria Agip Oil Company, a subsidiary of Eni SpA (E).

Despite this, Usman said the government expected the level of unrest in the Niger Delta to fall this year.

"We expect that our efforts in this area will continue and even intensify in 2007 and as a result, we believe that the social and economic disruptions, which we witnessed in the Niger Delta, will not persist in 2007," she said.

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