Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) has denied that some of its officials export products through international cartels for more than 22 years.

SaharaReporters had exclusively reported how the products, which included Liquefied Petroleum Gas and Liquefied Natural Gas were being shipped away illegally from the country in millions of metric tonnes.

Documents obtained by the newspaper show how vessels are loaded with hydrocarbon products from Nigeria to the United States, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina without documentation.

The illegal exportation it was gathered was done by some highly influential individuals with the backing of some bigwigs in the NLNG.

The NLNG is an Incorporated Joint Venture owned in the following proportions: Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) (49%), Shell Gas B.V. (25.6%), Total Energies Gaz & Electricité Holdings (15%), and Eni International N.A. N.V. S.àr.l (10.4%).

According to official records, NLNG has a total production capacity of 22 Million Tons Per Annum (mtpa) of LNG and 5mtpa of Natural Gas Liquids (NGLs) from its six-train plant complex and boasts of 16 long-term Sale and Purchase Agreements (SPAs) with 10 buyers and controls about 6 per cent of global LNG trade.

In five years, from 2009 to 2013, over $1 billion worth of hydrocarbon products were exported using backdoors from Nigeria to Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and the United States. Unconfirmed sources revealed that the illegal exportation is still ongoing with the backing of some key players in NLNG.

See Also Oil EXCLUSIVE: How Top Officials In Nigerian Corporations, NLNG, NNPC Operate International Cartels, Illegally Ship Over $1billion Oil To US, South American Countries

Reacting in a statement, Andy Odeh, NLNG’s general manager, external relations and sustainable development, said the report is calculated to ‘cast the company and its leadership in a bad light’.

According to the company, it has never engaged in unauthorised exportation of LNG since the company became operational in 1999. 

The statement read, “The attention of Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) has been drawn to a Sahara Reporters news story on 15th February 2022 under the caption: 'EXCLUSIVE: How Top Officials In Nigerian Corporations, NLNG, NNPC Operate International Cartels, Illegally Ship Over $1billion Oil To US, South American Countries.' 

“To set the records straight, NLNG wishes to state clearly that: Deliveries of LNG from its Bonny Terminal complies with all regulatory requirements for the export of its products and are made under various term and spot sales contracts to destinations not limited to Europe, the Far East, Greater Middle East, North America and South America, thus ensuring NLNG's position as a significant competitive global LNG supplier, promoting the Nigerian Brand.

“NLNG is a responsible corporate citizen operating its business according to strong business principles and ethics in accordance with requirements of relevant Nigerian and global laws and regulations.

“From the commencement of its operations in October 1999, NLNG has never, and does not, engage in “illegal” or “backdoor” exportation of LNG or any of its products, nor is NLNG involved in any international cartel, as alleged. It is simply not true that “… the illegal exportation is still ongoing with the backing of some players in NLNG”. The LNG trade undertaken by the Company is bound by strict protocols and controls, hence not amenable to the kind of illegitimate schemes alleged in the report.

“Contrary to the allegation of export of LNG without paperwork, records exist for every single cargo of product loaded by the Company since it commenced operation, together with fully accurate accounts of destinations, quantities loaded and unloaded and related earnings on each cargo, and these are demonstrable. For each of the past financial years, including the periods alluded to in the report, the Shareholders of NLNG, which includes NNPC and three IOCs, never reported that any cargo or product of the Company was lost or unaccounted for. Indeed, the possibility of such happening is beyond comprehension.

“For the avoidance of doubt, NLNG restates that the report paints a very incorrect picture of the Company’s business and its LNG trade and is at complete variance with the Company’s Vision as a globally competitive LNG Company helping to build a better Nigeria.

“NLNG demands an immediate retraction of the false and malicious report in its entirety, in addition to an apology, which must be given as much prominence as the original report. The legal rights of NLNG and its impacted personnel are fully reserved.”

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