Top 4 Buyers of Nigeria’s Crude Oil Now Focus on Electric Vehicles

The adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) in key worldwide markets poses a huge danger to Nigeria, as the top four importers of its crude oil are transitioning away from fossil fuels.

Notably, France, Spain, India, and the United States are progressively adopting electric vehicles, reflecting a greater worldwide trend toward environmental sustainability.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) predicts that sales of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids will set a new global record in 2024.

The organization also announced that 17 million battery electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles would be sold in 2024, a 20% rise over 2023 forecasts.

1. United States

In the first quarter of 2024, EV sales in the United States increased by 50% from the same period in 2023. This was the largest increase among top buyers, indicating a considerable move away from traditional fossil fuels.

2. India

India reported a 40% rise in EV adoption within the same time period, demonstrating its commitment to decreasing pollution and improving sustainable transportation options.

3. France

French markets showed a 24.3% surge in EV sales in early 2024, owing to government incentives and President Emmanuel Macron’s ambitious plans for the national automotive industry to enhance electric and hybrid car production.

4. Spain

Spain saw a 12% increase in EV sales in the first quarter of 2024, indicating a consistent but considerable adoption rate as the country moves toward green mobility.

Electromap, a platform that tracks EV sales in Europe, reveals that 36,000 electric vehicles were sold in Spain in the first quarter of 2024, up from 32,000 in the same period in 2023.

Implication for Nigeria

These developments are important because they imply a fall in traditional oil markets, which is particularly troublesome for Nigeria, whose economy is heavily reliant on oil exports.

According to the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, crude oil accounted for more than 88% of Nigeria’s total export value in the first quarter of 2024.

With its largest clients switching to electric vehicles, the consequences for Nigeria’s economy are dire, especially given that the country’s oil revenue is a significant contributor to foreign exchange revenues and government funding.

The country is still dealing with issues including oil theft, pipeline vandalism, and economic constraints caused by inflation and currency shortages. These concerns highlight the need for Nigeria to diversify its economy and reduce its reliance on oil exports.

Expert’s opinions

Tunde Ayeni, a top energy analyst in Lagos, raised concern about Nigeria’s preparedness for a declining oil market.

He stated, “Rather than slowing, the global EV revolution appears to be preparing for a new phase of growth.”

“The surge in investment in battery manufacturing shows that the EV supply chain is on track to satisfy automakers’ ambitious expansion goals.

As a result, the proportion of EVs on the road is likely to increase rapidly.”

In the same vein, Aisha Mohammed, an energy analyst with the Lagos-based Centre for Development Studies, expressed alarm about the Nigerian government’s apparent lack of foresight about what lies ahead.

“I shudder when Nigerian lawmakers still shout their voices hoarse on the relevance of oil, rather than challenge themselves in building knowledge-driven economies which can truly create wealth,” Mohammed said.

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