On Tuesday, President Major General Muhammadu Buhari (ret.) praised outgoing Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo as a deserving representative of his nation.
Buhari made this declaration when he met Barkindo at the State House in Abuja, according to a statement signed on Tuesday by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.
According to the statement, President Buhari says to Barkindo, the departing OPEC Secretary-General, “You’ve been an excellent representative of our nation.”
The President remarked that future generations will remember Barkindo favorably for his six years of outstanding leadership as the fourth Secretary-General of OPEC Nigeria, during which time he made both the country and himself proud.
“You have indeed been a worthy ambassador for our country.” We are proud of your achievements before and during your appointment at OPEC and the proud legacies you will leave behind.
“Your time in charge of the affairs of OPEC has been a very challenging one for the global oil industry.” Oil producers were finding it difficult to come together to address challenges that were crippling the oil market.
“Not long after, the world was faced with the COVID-19 pandemic that sent crude prices spiralling down at an alarming rate.” You showed incredible leadership to rally industry players and push through the turbulent times. There is no doubt about your efforts in putting together the Declaration of Cooperation, which is the largest in the history of OPEC and the global oil industry and also the longest in duration in the history of the organization. “This was a herculean task,” the President said.
The Nigerian president instructed the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited and the Ministry of Petroleum Resources to mobilize the oil and gas sector to organize a suitable welcome reception in honor of Barkindo.
In his remarks, Barkindo hailed President Buhari’s stellar leadership, charm, and international gravitas, as well as the Vienna-based OPEC secretariat’s assistance and the collaboration of the group’s members for his achievements.
According to him, ‘‘It was very obvious to me that this was beyond OPEC alone to address.” We needed to get the support of other leading oil producers around the world. I recall that I did consult with you and I drank from your fountain of wisdom and your deep reservoir of knowledge of OPEC and global affairs.
With your advice and guidance, I set out to various capitals around the world to try to persuade them to understand the gravity of the situation and the need for them to urgently join hands with OPEC.
“I did explain to them that they do not have to be full members of OPEC but we could work together in a framework of cooperation and on December 10, 2016, we signed this historic agreement in Vienna and on January 1, we started working together and we were able to assist the oil market to restore stability.”
The now six-year-old Declaration of Cooperation, according to the former OPEC Secretary-General, also assisted the group in navigating the market turmoil brought on by the COVID-19 epidemic in 2020.
He said that for a period of two years under COVID-19, the organization withdrew 9.6 million barrels per day from the market, the greatest adjustment in its history.
Due to a recovery in the world market and economy, he continued, OPEC is currently in the last stages of restoring the production statistics.
Barkindo stressed, “Throughout the period of my tenure, I have continued to benefit from the President’s international goodwill and everywhere I visited in the world, both within OPEC and outside OPEC, the first person your fellow Presidents, Prime Ministers, and Kings, asked me is, “How is my brother, President Muhammadu Buhari?”
Therefore, he expressed his gratitude to President Buhari for providing him the chance to serve and promised that Nigeria will continue to play a leading position in OPEC and the global oil business.
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