Nigeria’s Reference Crude Oil Grade Plunges to $29.47 Per Barrel

Nigeria’s reference crude oil grade, Bonny Light, slid below the $30 per barrel mark, dropping to $29.47 per barrel, according to data obtained from CBN on Thursday, January 14.

This was even as the price of Brent crude, the benchmark crude oil grade, leaped to $30.77 per barrel in the international market. Brent crude had dipped below $30 a barrel on Wednesday,January 13 for the first time in more than 10 years, a day after the U.S. benchmark took a similar fall.

Specifically, Brent traded as low as $29.96 a barrel before settling down 55 cents, or 1.8 percent, at $30.31 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, the lowest settlement since April 2004.

Therefore, using an average crude oil production of 2.2 million barrels per day, as stated by CBN, it is expected that the total amount accruable to the Federal Government and oil companies in Nigeria on a daily basis would dip to $64.83 million, about N12.967 billion daily, using an average exchange rate of N200 to a dollar.

Consequently, as a result of the continuous decline in the price of Nigeria’s Bonny Light and other crude oil grades, experts are predicting massive job cuts in the Nigerian and global oil and gas industry in the next couple of days.

Already, the world’s biggest oil companies are slashing jobs and discontinuing major investments, especially as the price of crude falls to new lows.

A report obtained from the Associated Press noted that companies that would be affected by the declining oil price would not only be the big oil producers, but the numerous companies that do business with them, such as drilling contractors and equipment suppliers.

Particularly, companies like BP, which had earlier in the week said it is cutting 4,000 jobs, had already commenced trimming down their operations to cope with the slump in oil, whose price had plummeted to its lowest level in 12 years and is not expected to recover significantly for months, possibly years.The report had quoted Chevron as saying last year that it would eliminate 7,000 jobs, while Shell announced 6,500 layoffs.

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