Nigeria’s crude oil output dropped by 38,102 barrels per day in March 2023, translating to a cumulative loss of about 1,181,162 barrels in the month, and signaled the first plunge in oil production in seven months. In monetary terms, average cost of Brent, the international benchmark for Nigeria’s oilwas US $78.43/barrel. Therefore, by losing 1,181,162 barrels in March, Nigeria failed to earn a total of US $92,638,535.66 (N42.71bn at the official exchange rate of N461/US $), during the period under review.
Nigeria’s Crude Oil Production
The major cause of the decline was a pipeline explosion at a major export pipeline in Rivers State, the 180, 000 barrels per day Trans Niger Pipeline that passes through the Rumuekpe community. It was gathered that the explosion happened after a crude oil pipeline that belong to Shell Company in the community was tampered with by vandals. Second, the drop in oil output volume is also ascribed to the general overhauling and maintenance of oil pipelines across Nigeria’s key oil production locations, which may have resulted in the closure of several pipes during significant repairs.
Ahead of the release of the April monthly oil market report (MOMR) of the organisation of the petroleum exporting countries (OPEC), the focus was on what happened to crude oil output in March 2023. It was thought that the fall in oil production in March was only temporary and will not jeopardize the country’s foreign earning. Notwithstanding, there was an urgent need for the country to improve on its production output by addressing oil bunkering and theft as well as illegal refining if it does not want to miss the output level needed for the 2023 budget, which stands at 1.69 million bpd for the year.