Nigerian Military to Protect Oil Assets to Curb Daily Losses

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Africa’s largest crude producer will tap the services of the military to protect its oil and gas infrastructure in a bid to curb daily losses from theft and vandalism.

Nigeria is losing about 200,000 barrels of crude daily, about 10% of output, Nigerian National Petroleum Corp. Managing Director Mele Kyari said during a meeting with Major General Lucky Irabor, the chief of defense staff.

Officers in the armed forces will be instructed to cooperate with the state-owned firm, Irabor said. “Our existence, economically, rests almost solely on the NNPC, and to that extent, we must do everything possible to give you everything that you require,” he said.

Crude exports account for about 90% of foreign-exchange earnings and about 50% of government revenue in the West African nation. Disruption to oil flow is regular due to sabotage and theft along exposed pipelines in the Niger River Delta through which most of the country’s crude is pumped.

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