February 25, 2021 / 6.00PM / Ottoabasi Abasiekong for WebTV/Heder Image
Credit: Twitter; @Nig_Gas_Assoc
The Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwoolu, and the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Mr. Timipre Sylva agreed that Nigeria can gain immense economic benefits from adopting a gas-led national energy strategy.
Both leaders made the point in their separate remarks at the 2021 Nigeria Gas Association (NGA) multilogues 2 series which discussed the theme "Powering Forward: Enabling Nigeria's Industrialization Via Gas".
Governor Sanwoolu argued that Nigeria had come to a point of needing cleaner and more sustainable cities, with effective planning for a growing population.
He stressed the importance of reducing dependence on dirty fuel, carbon emissions and the need to create greener jobs in the country.
The Governor said a gas-led energy approach was vital for Nigeria's economic sustainability, and this would provide the opportunity for collaboration between the gas industry and the T.H.E.M.E economic agenda of the state.
According to the Governor "We are looking at gas for transportation. We have state-funded transport companies and we are looking at how we can convert the automated gas oil (AGO) engines of some of the buses to gas-powered engines".
He assured stakeholders that Lagos was committed to the national gas expansion programme (NGEP), and repositioning itself as a gas-powered state economy.
The Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva, who was represented by Mr. Justice Defaraka the Technical Adviser on Gas Business & Policy Implementation, described gas as an enabler of long-term growth stating that Nigeria is blessed with a plethora of natural gas resources.
He said the development of gas was a national priority through the National Gas Programmes(NGP), which was initiated in 2017.
Sylva pointed out that Nigeria looks at gas as a critical transition fuel for achieving cleaner energy and a sustainable environment.
This according to the Minister informed the policy step of setting out 2020-2030 as the "Decade of Gas Development" to drive the gas agenda towards Nigeria's industrialization.
Some of the federal government initiatives highlighted for the development of gas as a viable energy source include;
The goal for the Minister was to mid-wife Nigeria into an effective user of gas for a sustainable environment and energy stability.
President of the International Gas Union, Mr. Joe Kang, in his remarks said energy was key to achieving some of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Kang said Nigeria could achieve sustainable economic development through power generation, increasing LPG use among households and improving gas supply to manufacturing companies.
The group managing director (GMD) of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kolo Kyari who was represented by Mr. Yusuf Usman, Chief Operating Officer, Gas and Power said the goal was to create a link between the domestic and export gas pipeline infrastructure in the country.
He said the NNPC was exploring the construction of a corridor for independent gas marketers to achieve scale in their activities, as the country seeks to promote gas as a transition fuel.
So far, the NNPC official informed conference stakeholders that the gas market had witnessed investments to roughly $3.5bn.
This covered the Brass Gas facility which is expected to produce 1bcf, with 2 methanol plants, a fertilizer plant and a condensate refinery.
According to Kyari there are plans to develop another facility in Oben, that would support gas infrastructure.
Mr Tony Attah, the chief executive officer (CEO) of the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Company (NLNG) in his presentation highlighted the key strides of the company in the last decade, which included the following;
The CEO of Seplat Petroleum, Mr Roger Brown, described Nigeria as the nation with the 10th world's largest gas reserves but currently ranks 17th in the area of production showing untapped potentials.
Brown noted that despite having Africa's largest gas reserves, only 4% of all funds invested in the African continent through foreign investments between 2015-2019, were attributed to Nigeria.
"Nigeria needs to give priority to policies that would support the creation of affordable energy through resources like gas", he said.
He called for a strengthening of the gas infrastructure, value chain and the issue of pricing to be addressed for a robust market in the country.