Oil and Gas

Nigeria minister: Working aggressively to fight oil theft

Reporting by Steve Sedgwick, writing by Deepanshu Bagchee
Pius Utomi Ekpei/Stringer | AFP

Nigeria is aggressively tackling oil theft in the country, oil minister Diezani Alison-Madueke told CNBC on Wednesday in a TV interview.

"We are grappling with the high incidents of crude oil theft which we are working very aggressively against, along with our international partners," Alison-Madueke told CNBC on the sidelines of a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna.

(Read more: Nigeria to speed up shift away from oil)

According to a report by Chatham House, Nigeria's crude oil is being stolen on an industrial scale. The organization estimates that the country lost at least 100,000 barrels of oil per day, or around 5 percent of total production.

Alison-Madueke said Nigeria was producing 2.3 million barrels of oil per day on average in 2013, higher than estimates of 1.9 million barrels per day.