ABUJA, Nov 17 (Reuters) - Nigeria's House of Representatives
will pass a long-delayed oil reform bill within six months, its
speaker said on Tuesday, potentially paving the way for an
overhaul of laws governing the country's oil and gas industry.
The reforms have been in the works for nearly two decades
and President Muhammadu Buhari sent the latest effort to the
National Assembly in late September.
The legislation looks to revise laws governing Nigeria's oil
and gas exploration which have not been fully updated since the
1960s because of the contentious nature of any change to oil
taxes, terms and revenue-sharing.
Oil executives have said reforms are key for Nigeria to
attract investment in an era of low oil prices and a shift away
from fossil fuels.
The government had aimed to pass the reforms by mid-summer.
House Speaker Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila said the House will
pass the bill "within the next six months, or probably less."
But he said the Oil Producers Trade Section, an industry
group that includes international companies such as Total
and Chevron as well as local companies such
as Aiteo and Oando , told him that the bill in its
present form, "doesn't provide the environment for future
Gbajabiamila said the group took issue with a variety of
provisions, including sections on royalties, tax, how to handle
state oil company NNPC's outstanding liabilities and the
segregation of the upstream and downstream, among other
(Reporting by Camillus Eboh. Editing by Jane Merriman)