By Yetunde Bada
Mr Gabriel Lima, the Minister of Mines, Industry and Energy of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, has lauded Nigeria’s role in its recent admittance into the Organisation of Petroleum Countries (OPEC).
Lima said this in a statement released in Abuja on Friday by the Director, Press, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Mr Idang Alibi.
The country had applied to be a member of the oil cartel in January and was accepted at the 172nd Ordinary Meeting of Organisation which was held in Vienna on May 25.
“In one of the most critical moments of our oil history, Nigeria through its Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, stood by our side and proved to be a true friend and partner.
“Equatorial Guinea will always remember with gratitude and affection how Nigeria offered us support on our application and extraordinary assistance along with our African brothers.
“Equatorial Guinea thanks Nigeria for supporting Equatorial Guinea to give Africa a stronger voice in Organisation,’’ Lima said.
Accepting the honour, Lima in Vienna, said “the Equatorial Guinea’s joining of OPEC is a triumph. This is a proud moment for us.
“There has never been a more important time to stand together and it is our honour to stand with OPEC as a positive force in global energy.
“We will use this platform to advance the interests of all African oil and gas explorers and producers as well as all members.’’
Sudan, which submitted its application in Oct. 2015, is still on the waiting list to be accepted into the organisation.
The meeting had brought together 13 OPEC countries and 11 non-OPEC countries.