The Petroleum Act Amendment Bill 2019 is set for debate in the Lower House today amid reports Federal State Member leaders are demanding a review to include their input in the crucial law which guides the exploitation of oil resources in the country.
The Bill which was tabled last month by Petroleum Minister Abdirashid Ahmed seeks to revise certain provisions in the original law passed by parliament in 2008. Among the areas are on revenue sharing between the Federal Government and the Federal Member States and negotiation of contracts with oil companies. The law also seeks to cushion the state from unfair contractual pacts with international oil companies on areas such as Production Sharing Agreements, environmental protection among others.
Sources told Goobjoog News Tuesday FMS leaders pushed the government to have the bill reviewed to factor in the views of the state governments. Both Jubbaland and Puntland dismissed the Bill last week noting they were not consulted.
The government is banking on the passage of the Petroleum Law to enabled it to bolster agreements with international oil companies. According to a timeline released during the London Oil conference in February, Somalia will award oil blocks to bidders January 20, 2019.
The government has since come under intense pressure to hold back the licensing rounds until all the requisite legal framework is in place.