Nigeria is to deploy drones to monitor the movement of ships in an effort to curb the rampant oil theft in the country, the state oil firm says, according to a BBC report.
Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says it wants to end crude theft in the next eight months.
Nigeria’s revenue is severely reduced by theft and attacks on oil pipelines.
Oil generates around 70% of government revenues in Africa’s biggest economy but a 2013 report by think tank Chatham House said that 100,000 barrels per day were being stolen.
That was equivalent to 5% of Nigeria’s daily production.
It said the theft was occurring on an “industrial scale”, with small barges transferring stolen oil to tankers waiting offshore to take it to international markets.
Senior politicians and military officers are said to be involved in the illegal trade.
The new head of NNPC Ibe Kachikwu also said the company would work more closely with Nigeria’s navy to tackle the problem.