By Emmanuel Addeh
Nigeria’s Domestic Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) consumption hit a record 1 million metric tonnes in 2020, the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), announced yesterday.
The new figures, according to the agency, was a remarkable improvement on the domestic gas utilisation of 840, 594.37 metric tonnes in 2019 and 635, 452 metric tonnes recorded in 2018.
Executive Director, PPPRA, Mr. Abdulkadir Saidu, who made the disclosure in a statement in Abuja, noted that the target of the federal government and other stakeholders to achieve five million metric tonnes of consumption by 2022 was still on course.
THISDAY, however learnt that despite the “feat”, much of the cooking gas were imported, in spite of the huge proven gas reserves in the country estimated at over 200 trillion cubic feet.
In 2019, while 45 per cent of the imports was from the United States of America (USA), 3.95 per cent was from Argentina and 8.99 per cent was from Equatorial Guinea.
Other countries from which Nigeria got the product were Algeria, 0.88; Trinidad and Tobago, 1.67; India, 0.50; Spain, 0.74, while the country could only source for 37.42 per cent of cooking gas within the country.
The PPPRA had listed some of the challenges of the LPG domestic market to include inefficient distribution chain, pricing distortion occasioned by high LPG price, limited jetties, limited depot storage, inadequate and under-supplied LPG terminals, unsafe cylinder population, among others.
The agency also listed availability, affordability, acceptability as well as accessibility as some of the barriers to LPG adoption.
Records also showed that in 2020, over 71 per cent was brought in from outside the shores of the country in the month of August 2020 alone.
However, having surmounted some of the challenges, PPPRA noted in the statement that it was set to achieve the Nigeria Gas Policy (NGP) of 2017 which envisaged LPG usage of 1 million metric tonnes per year.
It said: “The Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) is pleased to announce that Nigeria’s domestic Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) consumption exceeded 1million metric tonnes in 2020, making 2020 the first year in the nation’s history where LPG consumption has reached the one million MT threshold.
“Nigeria consumed 840,594.37 MT LPG in 2019, indicating an increase of 60.5 per cent over the 635,452.061MT recorded in 2018. This steady and sustained pattern of growth culminating in the over 1million metric tonnes of LPG domestic consumption milestone in 2020 has placed the country first in West Africa and one of the leading LPG consuming nations on the continent.
“With this laudable feat, the country is on track to meet the five million MT by 2022 target, set in the Nigeria Gas Policy (NGP) of 2017, which translates to an average of 1million MT/year, provided we collectively sustain and ramp up intervention efforts and initiatives of government and all stakeholders,” it stated.
The PPPRA stressed that the federal government’s resolve to deepen LPG penetration in the country seeks to create a healthier life for all Nigerians by providing access to a cleaner source of energy for cooking, vehicular transportation and other domestic uses.
It added that the attainment of the one million MT domestic utilisation milestone was a testimony to the progress made so far in ensuring the provision of alternative sources of fuelling to Nigerians in place of the traditional petrol, diesel and kerosene as well as altering the nation’s energy mix in favour of locally-available options.
PPPRA stated that already, Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited, has increased its allocation of LPG to the domestic market from 350, 000MT to 450, 000MT in 2021 in order to support the set goal.
Also, it said that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) recently commenced LPG production and load-out in its newly commissioned Nigerian Petroleum Development Company Limited (NPDC) Oredo gas handling facility, which has an estimated production stream of 330MT daily.
“The remarkable growth in the domestic LPG market remains largely driven by the impact of the federal government’s policies and programmes, coupled with the efforts of relevant stakeholders and regulatory bodies in the industry, all of which have led to the entrance of new players (investors) in the sector due to the creation of an enabling environment.