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Nigeria to privatise NNPC, amend royalties under draft oil reform bill

LAGOS, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Nigeria’s long-awaited oil reform bill would privatise the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, amend changes to deepwater royalties made late last year and scrap key regulatory agencies in favour of new bodies, according to a copy of the bill seen by Reuters.

President Muhammadu Buhari has sent the bill to the Senate, which along with the House of Representatives must sign off on it before it can become law. Nigeria is Africa’s largest crude exporter.

The closely watched legislation has been in the works for the past 20 years, and the main laws governing Nigeria’s oil and gas exploration have not been fully updated since the 1960s because of the contentious nature of any change to oil taxes, terms and revenue-sharing within Nigeria. (Reporting By Libby George; Editing by Catherine Evans)