PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari wants member states of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, and non-OPEC members to cooperate and find a common ground to stabilise crude oil prices.
Speaking at a bilateral meeting with the Sheikh Tamim Bin Hammad Al-Thani, emir of the State of Qatar, on Sunday, February 28, in Doha, Buhari described the current market situation in the industry, which has seen oil prices plummet by 70 percent since mid-2014, as “totally unacceptable.”
“As members of the OPEC and Gas Exporting Countries Forum, GECF, our relations in the areas of oil and gas, which our two nations heavily rely on, need to be enhanced and coordinated for the benefit of our people,” he said.
Besides, the Nigerian leader said: “The current market situation in the oil industry is unsustainable and totally unacceptable. We must cooperate both within and outside our respective organisations to find a common ground to stabilize the market, which will be beneficial to our nations.”
According to Femi Adesina, special adviser to the president on media and publicity, Buhari also commended the existing cordial bilateral relations between both countries and invited prospective Qatari investors to take advantage of the abundant opportunities in Nigeria and invest in the key areas of energy, agriculture, real estate development, banking and finance.
He assured prospective investors of government protection of their persons and investment, noting that in the course of his visit, the delegations from Nigeria and Qatar would formalise at least two bilateral agreements to boost economic cooperation between both countries.
Buhari seized the opportunity to commend the role Qatar was playing in resolving the Syrian crisis, the Palestinian cause and efforts in reconstructing Gaza.
“The conflicts in Yemen and Syria with their attendant humanitarian crisis need genuine international effort to solve. Nigeria as a peace-loving country identifies with the State of Qatar in all her peace efforts in the world to end terrorist activities.
“Nigeria is a victim of terrorism. It is with heavy heart that I stand before you and say activities of Boko Haram have led to loss of many lives and displacement of innocent people in our dear nation.
“We, however, take pride to inform you that since our coming to power, Boko Haram has been systematically decimated and is in no position to cause serious threat to our development programmes.
“I wish to reiterate that Nigeria rejects violence and extremism in all their ramifications, and assure your Highness that we are with the State of Qatar in your efforts to fight terrorism and injustice in your region and in the world at large,’’ he said.
— Feb 29, 2016 @ 12:10 GMT