THE Federal Government has concluded plans to expand the country's Liquefied Natural Gas (NLG) production from the current 26 million tonnes to 40 million tonnes a year.
The country has an estimated 180 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of proven natural gas reserves, making it the ninth largest natural gas reserve holder in the world and the largest in Africa.
The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Andrew Yakubu, who made this disclosure in Abuja at the opening ceremony of the Nigeria Oil and Gas conference, said the government has initiated extensive gas expansion projects, which would contribute about 20 million tonnes of gas per annum to the country's projection.
He listed the on-going projects to include, Brass LNG, LNG Train seven and OK LNG. Yakubu disclosed that the country is expected to contribute 10 per cent to the global NLG production target, which is expected to hit 400 million tonnes by 2030.
He stressed that that the Federal Government is committed increasing the country's gas production in its attempt to meet the target on power generation.
"For instance, government has aggressive agenda for gas to generate 40,000mw of electricity. That plan will be powered by 78 per cent by gas, this means that more focus will be place on gas development. The focus of Presidential Taskforce on gas will attract potential investment in the country.
There is a huge potential for the development of oil and gas sector".
He explained that Nigeria is concerned about contributing to the development of the global LNG market, where LNG is expected to grow by 400 million tonnes by the year 2030.
According to him, the country's gas production is expected to grow by 40 million tonnes, which is 10 per cent of global gas production. "This will be pursued through the development of gas projects such as Brass LNG in particular, LNG Train seven, and OK LNG. The Brass LNG and OK LNG are expected to contribute additional 20 million tonnes.
These are parts of the opportunities we are pursuing in the industry. Again, there is a shift of focus to domestic gas consumption. The power agenda of the President on the gas revolution will also boost the development of the petroleum industry.
Nigeria is set to capture greater portion of LNG market in the world", he said.
Dwelling on the Trans-Saharan gas pipeline project, he disclosed: "The project, which is sub-regional initiative, is still on the drawing board. There are other issues that surround the development of that project, which has to do with market, as you know that gas project is market driven, that has to be put in the right perspective to enable it move.
Usually, when you are developing a project, look around the investment and environment, the domestic gas development has never hampered the development of Trans-Saharan gas project".