Nigeria urged to diversify oil sector

Jan. 28, 2013 at 7:37 AM

ABUJA, Nigeria, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- A Nigerian business daily stated that the country needs to expand its base of oil consumers given the shale boom under way in the United States.

U.S. supermajor ConocoPhillips last month sold stakes in oil fields in Nigeria. Production there is in decline as militants in the oil-rich Delta region have waged war on the sector.

Meanwhile, Nigerian economic daily newspaper Business Day writes that the shale oil and natural gas boom in the United States means diversity is central to Nigerian development.

"The United States is just one importer; there could be many others, and what is working in their minds can only be left to the imagination," an editorial reads.

Business Day states that Nigerian crude oil exports to the United States were down by around 5 percent in 2012 compared to the previous year.

Nigeria gets 75 percent of its revenues from oil. The country is the No. 7 oil producer among the 12 members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

"We believe, and strongly too, that it is the egg laid today that becomes a chick tomorrow," the Business Day editorial reads. "Time to diversify the economy is now."

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