11 Jul

Daily Watch – Petrobras wants out of Nigeria, DStv & GOtv prices go up in August

  • Nigerian lawmakers voted on Tuesday to investigate the NNPC over a shortfall in revenue remittances to government coffers, in a motion passed by the lower house of the National Assembly. Last month, Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun called the NNPC’s payments to the government account “unacceptable”, as they were less than expected in light of higher crude oil prices. Those publicly-raised concerns triggered Tuesday’s vote by the House of Representatives to probe the NNPC, which noted an “under-remittance of about ₦100 billion ($327.65 million).” The house resolved to establish an ad-hoc committee to investigate crude oil sales and other sources of funds to NNPC for May and June and is due to report back in two weeks.
  • The CBN’s Inflation Attitude Report suggests that Nigerians prefer higher interest rates to higher inflation. The report, published on the regulator’s website, also showed that Nigerians prefer lower interest rates if the conditions were right. The bank’s MPC has held rates at 14 per cent since 2016 to keep inflation in check. “Respondents were asked to choose between raising interest rates in order to keep inflation down, and keeping interest rates down to allow prices to rise,” the report read. It said 26.3 per cent preferred interest rates to rise in order to keep inflation down compared to 28 per cent who said they would prefer prices to rise faster, while 45.6 per cent “had no idea.”
  • Brazilian state-controlled oil company Petróleo Brasileiro SA is close to agreeing to the sale of its stake in an African venture for around $1.3 billion, newspaper Valor Econômico said on Tuesday. Petrobras, as the company is known, owns 50 per cent of Petrobras Oil & Gas BV, or Petrobras Africa. Grupo BTG Pactual SA holds a 40 per cent stake in the venture and Helios Investment Partners owns the remaining 10 per cent. All three shareholders would sell their stakes, valuing the venture at around $2.6 billion, Valor said, citing an unnamed source. Petrobras Africa participates in two deepwater oil exploration blocks off the coast of Nigeria that contain the Akpo and Agbami producing fields and are operated by Total and Chevron respectively.
  • Multichoice Nigeria has announced plans to slash subscription price on its terrestrial GOtv platform while increasing prices on its digital satellite platform, DStv from 1 August. With this new tariff plan, subscribers on GOtv Max package will enjoy a reduction from ₦3,800 to ₦3,200 while the prices on GOtv Plus, GOtv Value and GOtv Lite packages remain fixed at ₦1,900, ₦1,250 and ₦400 respectively. Subscribers on DStv Premium package will see a price increase from ₦14,700 to ₦15,800; Compact Plus from ₦9,900 to ₦10,650; Compact from ₦6,300 to ₦6,800; Family from ₦3,800 to ₦4,000 and on Access, ₦1,900 to ₦2,000. The company has said the price increases were necessary due to increased inflation. Multichoice has a history of increasing prices arbitrarily. Nairametrics reports that prices have increased eight times between 2009 and 2017, an average of a price change every two years.
  • Force majeure remains in place on exports of Nigeria’s Bonny Light crude, a Shell spokesman said on Tuesday. The company declared force majeure on Bonny Light exports on May 17 following the shutdown of the Nembe Creek Trunkline. “No change at Bonny,” the Shell spokesman told Reuters. Sellers have bumped up their asking prices as outages curb supply, but no change in levels was heard on Tuesday, the news agency reported. Bonny Light, Qua Iboe and Forcados were last heard to be on offer at around dated Brent plus $2 a barrel.