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Nigeria Loses Top Oil-Producing Spot, impact on foreign exchange earnings revealed

by Vicky Oselumese
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Nigeria Loses Top Oil-Producing Spot, impact on foreign exchange earnings revealed

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A recent report by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has revealed that Nigeria has lost its position as the top oil producer in Africa to Libya. In March 2024, Libya produced 1.24 million barrels of crude oil, surpassing Nigeria’s production of 1.23 million barrels for the same month. This marks a significant shift in the oil industry dynamics in Africa.

Reasons Behind Nigeria’s Declining Oil Production

The decline in Nigeria’s oil production can be attributed to various factors. Limited infrastructure, security breaches in oil-producing areas, and operational challenges have all contributed to the difficulties faced by the Nigerian oil sector. Additionally, the country has been grappling with rampant oil theft in the Niger Delta region, with pipelines and other oil infrastructure being targeted by thieves.

The Impact on Nigeria’s Foreign Exchange Earnings

Experts have highlighted the importance of increased oil output for Nigeria’s foreign exchange earnings, especially with crude oil prices nearing $100 per barrel in the international market. However, the challenges faced by the Nigerian oil industry, including oil theft and security issues, have hindered the country’s ability to capitalize on the current high oil prices.

Adeola Yusuf, an energy policy analyst, emphasized the need for Nigeria to boost its oil earnings to stabilize the local currency. With the potential windfall from high oil prices, Nigeria has a chance to significantly increase its foreign exchange earnings and strengthen its economy.

This article was updated 1 month ago

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