The price of Brent, the crude against which Nigeria’s oil is priced, increased marginally on Monday as the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries projected a slow growth momentum in terms of economic recovery this year.
Also, OPEC announced the appointment of its next Secretary-General, expected to assume office in August 2022, following the expiration of the second term of Nigeria’s Sanusi Barkindo, in July.
Oil price figures seen in Abuja on Monday showed that the cost of Brent appreciated by 1.12 per cent or $0.87 to $78.65 per barrel as at 5.10pm Nigerian time.
It was further observed that price increases were also recorded in oil grades in the OPEC Basket and WTI crude on Monday.
Crude oil in the OPEC Basket rose to $77.97 per barrel, representing a 5.04 per cent or $3.74 rise as at 5.10pm, when compared to what was posted the previous day.
For WTI crude, the commodity appreciated marginally in price, as it increased by 0.73 per cent or $0.55 to $75.76 as at 5.10pm on Monday.
Meanwhile, in his opening remarks at the 58th Meeting of the Joint Technical Committee via videoconference on Monday, Barkindo expressed hope that the oil sector would record progress in 2022, but stressed that the challenges posed by the Omicron variant of COVID-19 had been tough.
The OPEC scribe noted that the world had learnt several hard lessons over the past two years, as many economies were now better equipped today to manage COVID-19 and its side effects.
“Despite the steady progress that has been made in terms of the economic recovery, we do expect significant levels of uncertainty in the weeks to come, which could slow the growth momentum,” Barkindo, however, stated.
This came as a special meeting of the conference of OPEC, which was held via videoconference on Monday, under the Chairmanship of its President, Bruno Jean-Richard Itoua, announced the appointment of a new Secretary-General for the oil cartel.
OPEC disclosed this in a statement issued by the Vienna-based organisation after the special meeting.
“In accordance with Article 28 of the OPEC Statute and in application of the procedure decided at the 182nd meeting of the conference on December 1, 2021, the conference decided by acclamation to appoint by Mr. Haitham Al-Ghais of Kuwait as Secretary-General of the organisation, with effect from August 1, 2022, for a period of three years,” the statement read in part.
It described Al-Ghais as a veteran of the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation and Kuwait’s OPEC Governor from 2017 to June 2021, as he currently serves as Deputy Managing Director for International Marketing at KPC.
The conference also expressed its appreciation to Nigeria’s Sanusi Barkindo for his leadership during his two-term tenure as Secretary-General beginning on August 1, 2016 and ending on July 31, 2022.
Barkindo is a long-serving veteran of Nigeria’s oil industry and OPEC, who has been instrumental in expanding OPEC’s historical efforts to support sustainable oil market stability through enhanced dialogue and cooperation with many energy stakeholders, including the landmark Declaration of Cooperation since its inception in December 2016.
These efforts are widely credited with helping to stabilise the global oil market since the unprecedented market downturn related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and providing a platform for recovery.
Before being appointed Secretary-General, Barkindo held a number of key roles at OPEC between 1986 and 2010, including acting Secretary-General in 2006.
He is known internationally for helping to produce the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto protocol as the leader of Nigeria’s technical delegation to the UN negotiations in 1991.
He has remained a key contributor to the UNFCCC process, including most recently at the 26th Conference of Parties meeting in Glasgow in October and November 2021.