As Nigeria braces for the shocks of divestments of oil assets held by International Oil Companies (IOCs), there are mixed concerns that the decision could worsen oil exploration, or in a fit of hope, spur more exploration activities by indigenous companies.
Daily Trust on Sunday reports that though the current trends have reached an alarming level, divestments of assets started around 2010, about 12 years ago, as IOCs openly decried increasing sabotage, community crises, insecurity, oil theft, and most recently a rising global withdrawal of financing for fossil fuel activities in solidarity for actions against climate change.
IOCs offloading assets worth N20trn
Several reports since 2021 had shown that some of the IOCs were in the process of divesting assets worth over N20.8 trillion. For instance, Shell plans to divest about $2.3bn in assets, Eni’s asset divestment is around $5bn and ExxonMobil would offload $15bn in assets.
More so, Rystad Energy, an international energy consulting firm, in its energy transition report, estimated that Total and ConocoPhillips would divest assets close to $27.5bn.
The five IOCs are major players who currently control over 45 percent of Nigeria’s oil production assets.