ABUJA, July 30 (Reuters) - Nigeria lost out on $10.9 billion
in potential oil revenues due to oil theft between 2009-2011,
the chairman of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency
Initiative (NEITI) said on Tuesday.
"Over 136 million barrels estimated at $10.9 billion was
lost to crude oil theft and sabotage," Ledum Mitee said in an
emailed statement, after NEITI published an audit of the
Nigerian oil and gas sector this week.
NEITI is a government agency that operates as part of a
global EITI scheme aimed at improving transparency among
commodity producing countries.
Oil theft in Nigeria is often associated with criminal gangs
who tap crude from pipelines for local refining but the majority
of stolen crude leaves the country in large tankers.
Security experts say the scale of the theft - estimated at
up to 250,000 barrels per day - could not be achieved without
the complicity of officials.
(Reporting by Joe Brock; editing by Keiron Henderson)