Oil workers under the aegis of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria have called on the Federal Government to engage stakeholders in the amendment of the Nigeria LNG Act.

PENGASSAN said in a statement that the government should seek stakeholders’ input in the implementation of the new Joint Venture cash calls structure, and the passage of the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill.

In a communiqué issued after its National Executive Council meeting in Abuja, the union commended the Federal Government’s efforts at exiting the current JV cash calls that led to its indebtedness to the International Oil Companies and the attendant challenges associated with the system.

The communiqué read in part, “The NEC appreciates the Federal Government efforts in the payment of arrears of joint venture cash calls, particularly the establishment of a road map to clear outstanding cash calls arrears.

“The NEC reiterates the need for the Federal Government to engage the labour unions in the implementation of the proposed new joint venture cash calls structure, which is scheduled to commence in January 2017.”

On the recent attempt to amend the NLNG Act (Fiscal, Guarantees, Assurances and Incentives) by the House of Representatives, PENGASSAN said the consequences of the proposed amendment would impinge on the continued existence of the nation’s most productive public corporation.

It said the proposed amendment would discourage inflow of foreign investment; lead to loss of $25bn investment, loss of 18,000 potential jobs; reverse gains in gas flaring reduction and constrain the NLNG’s development initiatives in the Niger Delta region.

The union, therefore, advised the House of Representatives to seek wider stakeholders’ inputs before commencing the proposed amendment of the NLNG Act.

While commending the recent efforts by the National Assembly to commence the process of passage of the PIGB, PENGASSAN noted that the delay in passage of the bill had been a disincentive to investments in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry.

It commended the Senate Joint Committee on Petroleum for facilitating the public hearing held between December 7 and 9, but said an all-inclusive industry stakeholders’ summit should be convened to ensure adequate representation of various stakeholders.