Chief Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, says the Federal Government is providing a lot of enablers needed to realise the full potential of the gas sector.
Sylva made this known while speaking at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Nigerian Oil and Gas (NOG) Conference and Exhibition on Tuesday in Abuja.
The conference has the theme: “Expanding the Nigerian Content Frontier through Intra-African Trade.”
Sylva said previous studies had presented Nigeria as an energy poor country.
He said 62 per cent of Nigerians lack access to electricity and 90 per cent lack access to modern cooking fuels.
“Our government is working on many initiatives to tackle these challenges, one of which is the gas to power Initiative aimed at minimising gas flaring and harnessing our gas resources to electricity to meet Nigeria’s electricity demands.
“It is very worthy to note that the Federal Government is providing a lot of enablers, which are needed to realise the full potential of the gas sector.
“This includes the development of critical infrastructures and systems such as the Obiafu-Obrikom-Oben
(OB3) Gas Pipeline, the Ajaokuta Kaduna-Kano (AKK) Gas Pipeline, the Nigerian Gas Transportation Network Code (NGTNC).
“The Nigerian Gas Transportation Network Code (NGTNC) providesstreamlined operational and fiscal terms for third-party use of gas distribution and transmission infrastructures,” Sylva said.
According to him, the Petroleum Industry Act further provides new and attractive terms for participation in the Nigeria gas sector.
He said these were supply-side enablers, which were capable of eliciting commercial interests and investments in gas utilisation.
The minister noted that one of the most important provisions of the PIA for the gas sector was the establishment of the Midstream and Downstream Gas Infrastructure Fund.
He said the fund would have the power to make equity investments into relevant gas infrastructure projects and
consequently encourage private sector investment through participation and risk sharing.
Sylva said the realisation of the industry’s enormous potential depended on government commitment to policy implementation as well as private sector commitment and support to government in achieving policy and agenda.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has shown seriousness and determination in the development of Nigeria’s vast gas resources, not just as a major exporter but also as a major gas consuming nation.
“The president will continue to strengthen the gas value chain, as it is vital in transforming the economy of our great country.
“This initiative will create over two million jobs per annum, promote skills acquisition, enhance technology transfer in addition to growing the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” Sylva said.
Also, Mr Rick Kennedy, Chairman, Oil Producers Trade Section (OPTS) and Managing Director, Chevron Nigeria Ltd. called for the smooth and timely implementation of the PIA.
Kennedy also called for the reduction in operational cost in order for the industry to remain attractive to investors.
“OPTS remains committed as a trusted partner of the government and all stakeholders to move the industry forward, ” he said.