Decade of Gas: Nigeria Needs To Expand Gas Pipelines To All Industrial Hubs – Eberechukwu Oji

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…says Government needs to develop policy that enables private capital to invest in pipeline building to make gas available to all state’s capital cities in Nigeria.

By Ndubuisi Micheal Obineme

To industrialize Nigeria under the Decade of Gas’, ND Western CEO Eberechukwu Oji has said Nigeria needs to expand gas pipeline infrastructures to all industrial hubs in the country, adding that domestic gas should be made available to all the state’s capital cities.

Oji made this known in an exclusive interview with our correspondent at the sideline of the 21st Nigeria Oil & Gas (NOG) Conference & Exhibition (NOG Energy Week) that took place from July 4-7, 2022 in Abuja.

According to Oji, A country is considered industrialized if its industrial output stands at around 20% of its gross domestic product (GDP).

“Nigeria is far below that as the industrial capacity isn’t there.

“For Nigeria to industrialize, we need to utilize the gas resources we have. Gas is a major catalyst for industrialization and pipeline gas is the cheapest gas that you can use to spur industrialization”.

Speaking further, he said Nigeria has an opportunity to boost manufacturing and industrial production by monetizing its natural gas reserves.

“Government needs to make a singular objective – may be to start with manufacturing and other industry-related sectors to contribute 20% output to our GDP.

“Nigeria can achieve it with gas because gas has a lot of opportunities which will solve some of the problems.

“Government should develop policy that enables private capital to come into pipeline building to make gas available to all the 33 states capital cities in Nigeria.

“The AKK pipeline is an excellent gas project to take gas to the North but there are also demand centers in the East which the government needs to support in building gas pipelines towards the East.

“We need to make gas available in Benue, Ebonyi, and Anambra states as there is originally conceived eastern gas network.

“If we set this as a national objective, gas producers like ND Western will be incentivized to produce more gas because the supply chains will open up everywhere,” he added.

Furthermore, Oji was also speaking to our correspondent during that period when the European Union declared gas and nuclear power plant as “green energy” to lure in more private investors.

ND Western owns 45% of OML 34 in the onshore Niger Delta where it produces oil and natural gas. It notably operates three gas processing plants there with a combined capacity of 600 MMscf/d and supplies gas to power plants and industries. However, illiquidity in the power sector value-chain has made investments into gas production uneconomically, and demand for gas-based industrialization is seen as much more attractive for operators in Nigeria.