Former Nigerian Local Content Head to Share Best Practices at Namibia International Energy Conference (NIEC) 2024

Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote, former Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), will speak at the upcoming Namibia International Energy Conference (NIEC) 2024, unlocking newfound collaboration between the two countries on local content policy development and implementation. 

Since his appointment in 2016, Wabote has been a fierce advocate of local beneficiation for both Nigerians and Africans across the sector, steering strategic national programs to build local capacity, calling for enhanced transparency in contracting processes and boosting local manufacturing capabilities. The NCDMB serves to review Nigerian content plans developed by operators, set guidelines and minimum content levels for project-related activities across the oil and gas value chain and engage in targeted capacity building interventions, among other key responsibilities, with a view to achieving 70% local content by 2027. 

Energy Capital&Power is a strategic partner of the Namibia International Energy Conference (NIEC) – taking place in Windhoek on April 23-25, 2024. The 6th annual conference unites industry leaders, business executives and policymakers to engage in dialogue, exchange ideas, create new partnerships and identify strategies to foster a prosperous energy industry in Namibia and beyond. For more information, please visit https://www.nieconference.com/

Having spent 26 years at Shell Petroleum Development Company Nigeria, Wabote offers a unique private sector perspective on local content development and compliance, with roles spanning business management to government relations to local content strategy. During his tenure at the NCDMB, Wabote established a series of impactful initiatives including the $350-million Nigerian Content Intervention Fund, which provides affordable credit for Nigerian oil and gas service companies and local contractors, as well as the $40-million Women in Oil and Gas Intervention Fund, created in partnership with the Nigerian Export-Import Bank. 

These policy interventions, pioneered by the NCDMB under Wabote’s leadership, could serve as a blueprint for other African countries seeking to directly translate oil and gas revenues into local content development. Namibia, for its part, is in the process of drafting its own National Upstream Petroleum Local Content Policy, following a series of high-profile offshore discoveries since 2022. The southern African country is seeking to establish an effective policy that enables training and skill development, job creation and the participation of national companies and service providers across the sector, with a view to generating and retaining local value. 

As Namibia’s Ministry of Mines and Energy continues to consult with stakeholders on its draft policy, NIEC 2024 represents a valuable platform to exchange local content best practices, as well as catalyze new investment in infrastructure, capacity building and technology. The NCDMB is one of the key features that sets Nigeria’s local content policy apart in that it oversees and implements the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act, while forming strategic partnerships with leading industry players and educational institutions. 

“As an emerging producer, Namibia can learn from mature markets like Nigeria when it comes to establishing a comprehensive local content framework with specific guidelines. Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote has been a long-time champion of accelerating indigenous participation in oil and gas contracts and ensuring that policy interventions support national local content targets. A well-formulated local content policy is critical to creating both backward and forward linkages across Namibia’s value chain that ensure oil and gas resources are leveraged for inclusive growth,” says Selma Shimutwikeni, CEO of RichAfrica Consultancy, organizers of NIEC 2024. 

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Energy Capital&Power.

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