Nigeria records positive current account balance of N823 billion
Nigeria recorded a positive current account balance of $2.72 (N823 billion) million in 2016, showing a sign of recovering from a deficit of $15.43 million in 2015.
The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), which made the disclosure in its 2017 Annual Statistics released recently, showed that OPEC countries recorded a collective current account deficit of $43.740 million during the period under review.
Current account deficit is a measurement of a country’s trade in which the value of goods and services it imports exceeds the value of goods and services it exports.
The current account also includes net income, such as interest and dividends, as well as transfers, such as foreign aid, though these components tend to make up a smaller percentage of the current account than exports and imports. The current account is a calculation of a country’s foreign transactions, and along with the capital account is a component of a country’s balance of payment.
The cartel had recorded positive current account balance of $511.49 million in 2012; $431.43 million in 2013; and $252.76 million in 2014, but dropped to $98.701 million at the unset of crude oil prices recovering in 2015.
Nigeria on the other hand, recorded positive current account balance of $17.56 million in 2012; $19.205 million in 2013; and $907,000 in 2014 before recording the highest deficit of $15.43 in 2015.
Also, oil producing wells in Nigeria dropped by 279 from 1,947 in 2015 to 1,668 in 2016. Nigeria’s producing wells were 2,101 in 2014 before the decline in crude oil prices, which brought down investment in exploration activities.
According to OPEC, total world proven crude oil reserves stood at 1,492 billion at the end of 2016, increasing slightly by 0.3 per cent from the previous year’s level of 1,488 billion.
OPEC disclosed that the largest additions came from Iraq, Venezuela and Norway. “Total OPEC members’ proven crude oil reserves increased 0.5 per cent to 1,217billion at the end of 2016, with a share of 81.5 per cent of total world crude oil reserves. In 2016, proven natural gas reserves increased by 0.4 per cent to approximately 200.5 trillion standard cubic metres. This increase in natural gas reserves came on the back of new discoveries in the Middle East and Africa, almost solely relating to OPEC members.
Total exports of crude oil of OPEC member countries stood at 25.01million barrels per day (bpd) in 2016 from 23.49m bpd in 2015.This increase, OPEC noted represents a 6.5 per cent growth on a year-on-year basis. As in previous years, the bulk of crude oil from OPEC members was exported to the Asia and Pacific region, 15.72m bpd or 62.9 per cent.
It noted that significant volumes of crude oil were also exported to North America, which increased its imports from OPEC members from 2.81m bpd in 2015 to 3.29m bpd in 2016. Europe imported 4.21m bpd of crude oil from OPEC members, 2.5 per cent less as compared to 2015 volumes.
OPEC members’ exports of petroleum products averaged 5.29m bpd during 2016, up by 0.90m b/d or 20.5 per cent compared to 2015. On the other hand, members’ imports of petroleum products stood at 2.06m bpd in 2016, roughly 0.15m bpd, or 6.7 per cent lower than in 2015.
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, assured that pipeline vandalism arising from militant activities in the Niger Delta has reduced drastically in the last few months.
A statement by the Director of Press in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Idang Alibi, said the near zero rupturing of pipelines in the oil rich region was mainly due to the consultations and ongoing discussions with Niger Delta stakeholders.According to the statement, pursuing peace, security and stability in the Niger Delta was an integral aspect of the implementation of the ministry’s target for the year.
Kachikwu had announced in 2016 that the government was working hard on no vandalism of oil pipelines in 2017, while efforts are ongoing to substantially reduce youth restiveness in the Niger Delta.