Holders of refining licences in the country can pay for domestic crude oil supply in naira, according to the Petroleum Industry Bill passed by the National Assembly on Thursday, Punch reports.

Companies holding refining licences include Dangote Oil Refinery Company, Waltersmith Refining & Petrochemical Company Limited, OPAC Refineries, Niger Delta Petroleum Resources, BUA Refinery & Petrochemicals and Edo Refinery and Petrochemical Company Limited.

According to copies of the passed bills seen by Punch correspondent, the Senate and House of Representatives recommended that payment guarantees to be provided by refinery licence holders shall be in dollars or naira.

“Since refiners themselves may only be paid in naira for deliveries to the domestic market, it may be onerous to require US dollar payments,” the Senate Joint Committee on Downstream Petroleum Sector; Petroleum Resources (Upstream); and Gas said in its report.

The bill provides two regulators, namely the Nigerian Upstream Regulatory Commission and the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority.

In Section 109 subsections 2 and 3, the National Assembly said, “The commission may issue regulations or guidelines on the mechanism for the imposition of a domestic crude oil supply obligation on lessees of upstream petroleum operations, including applicable penalties.

“The authority shall supply the commission regularly the crude oil requirements of refineries in operation and where shortages or inadequate supply conditions occur report such conditions to the commission.”