The Group Managing Director, Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari, has said the Federal Government is aggressively pursuing other gas development initiatives to improve Nigeria’s current utilization of alternative fuels as well as stimulating gas demand and power generation in the country.
Kyari, at the virtual Businessday Future of Energy Summit, also said the NNPC is making concrete efforts to expand natural gas resource exploration, noting that it would capitalize on its experience on key players in the industry to grow production efficiently, leveraging technology acquisition, and project financing across the value chain.
This is even as the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, hinted that the abundance of natural gas resources in Nigeria has made the gas transition initiative a low hanging fruit waiting to be harnessed.
Sylva said the transformation initiative clearly indicated that natural gas has come to play a significant role in the dominant future energy source for use in Nigeria from the medium to the long term.
“The summit has been so aptly themed harnessing Nigeria’s energy potentials for the future. Energy encourages national economic growth and there is no gain saying that Nigeria remains one of the most blessed countries on the face of the earth with a plethora of mineral and energy resources waiting to be harnessed,” he said.
He added: “In this regard, the Buhari-led administration carved out some strategic priorities for the Ministry of petroleum resources in order to foster the sustainability of the Nigerian economy, enhance energy availability, create well paid jobs and take millions of Nigerians out of poverty.”
Sylva said Nigeria must continue to optimize the use and application of its resources, warning that there are still turbulent times ahead courtesy of the dwindling oil price.
Meanwhile, Kyari said the Corporation had identified five key priorities for the gas sector, which is to deliver the gas infrastructure blueprint through the AKK project, grow domestic gas utilization to 5 billion scf by 2022, develop 5GW of power generation by 2022, explore transition, partnership and investment in the gas sector.
He said to drive and stimulate investment in the natural gas sector, the NNPC is focusing on the implementation of the Nigerian Gas Master Plan (NGMP), which covers infrastructure, sectoral development, and requires framework.
Kyari noted that collaboration is key in all of these efforts, adding that NNPC has a succession planning in place to provide adequate energy infrastructure in tandem with the expanding population growth and also in alignment with the objectives of the government to encourage economic growth.
“NNPC is committed to supporting sustainable legislation that would bring about a transformation to the industry, promote transparency and accountability across the value chain. We remain committed to driving Nigeria’s gas sector development.
The Managing Director, Nigeria LNG Limited, Bayo Ojulari, stressed the need for the Federal Government to prioritize development towards gas, since the country has ridden on the back of oil for more than 50 years, but must now fly on the wings of gas in its quest to leapfrog to the next level.
“We cannot achieve much without infrastructure. We are also very glad to hear some of the infrastructure development the Federal Government is embarking on to harness the natural resources we have in the country.”
He also reiterated the need to guarantee the security of gas assets, noting that vandalism has continued to impact the product supply. He also urged the government to declare a decade of gas, and establish a 10-year window for the commerciality and commercial framework to enable Nigeria to harness the value of the resource and galvanize domestic gas to drive industrialization.