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By NBF News
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President Goodluck Jonathan has described the completion of the Satellite Fields Development Platforms at Snake Island, Lagos, as a proof that Nigerian Content Act was already yielding the expected transformational results.

Speaking at the commissioning of Abang & Itut Satellite Field Development Project Platforms-designed and fabricated at Nigerdock Island Integrated Free Zone for Mobil Producing Nigeria, the President maintained that it was by developing capacities locally and owning assets used in industry operations that the sector can increase employment opportunities, produce and utilize more locally manufactured goods and components.

According to him: “What we have witnessed today is a demonstration of the rightness of the LocalCcontent Law. When you consider that oil and gas sector accounts for over 80 per cent of the country's income then you will appreciate the importance of what the law can do to transform our economy.”

He regretted that the failure to attain the old target of 70 per cent local content in the industry by 2010 was as a result of limited capacity, adding that the accomplishment by Nigerdock will spur capacity building by other companies.

Meanwhile, the Federal Government said it was planning to achieve Final Investment Decisions for new projects estimated at $150 billion over the next five years.

Minister of Petroleum Resourses, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, has said efforts had progressed to ensure that there will be enough yards, facilities, institutional knowledge and trained manpower to execute a high proportion of the works in Nigeria to international standards of quality and safety.

The minister recalled that for several decades, similar ceremonies were celebrated in yards located in Asia, Europe and the Americas where the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry traditionally procured Floating, Processing, Storage and Offloading Units, Offshore platforms, line pipes, marine vessels, LNG Tankers, Drilling Rigs, power plants and other equipment packages servicing the Oil and Gas industry.

According to her: 'The result is that while revenue from oil production activities has been impressive, there is no employment growth and little impact on our GDP from industry activity.'

The minister further explained that by fabricating the platforms and similar structures locally, Nigerdock facility supports a workforce of over a thousand, provides practical training and employment opportunities for hundreds of engineers and welders and is attracting international technical partnerships and investments for upgrade of plant and infrastructure.