By Deji Elumoye
President Muhammadu Buhari has launched “The Decade of Gas in Nigeria” with a pledge that his administration would fully utilise the enormous gas resources in the country to uplift the economy and drive industrialization within 10 years.
Buhari, who made the pledge at the virtual Nigeria International Petroleum Summit (NIPS) 2021 Pre-Summit Conference, said given the country’s potential of about 600 trillion cubic feet of gas, the commodity has the enormous potential to diversify Nigeria’s economy.
Setting the tone for the development of the industry in the next 10 years, he explained that the rising global demand for cleaner energy sources has offered Nigeria an opportunity to exploit gas resources for the good of the country and the government intends to seize the opportunity.
The president said while his administration has prioritized gas development and recorded remarkable progress, it is well known that Nigeria is a gas nation with a little oil, but the country has focused on oil over the years.
According to him, ”Before the declaration of Year 2020 as The Year of Gas, this administration had shown commitment to the development of Nigeria’s vast gas resources and strengthening of the gas value chain by reviewing and gazetting policies and regulations to enhance operations in the sector as encapsulated in the National Gas Policy of 2017.
”Our major objective for the gas sector is to transform Nigeria into an industrialized nation with gas playing a major role and we demonstrated this through enhanced accelerated gas revolution.”
Speaking further, President Buhari commended the collaboration between the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Nigeria LNG Limited to actualize the dream of transforming Nigeria with its massive gas resources.
Describing the NLNG as the federal government’s arrowhead in the reduction of gas flaring in Nigeria, he said: ”NLNG, which contributes about one per cent to GDP, has generated $114 billion in revenues over the years, $9 billion in taxes, $18 billion in dividends to the federal government and $15 billion in feed gas purchase. These achievements were accomplished with 100 per cent Nigerian management and 95 per cent Nigerian workforce.
”I would like to charge all other relevant MDAs on the need to partner with the international oil companies, the indigenous oil companies and financial institutions to actualise the dream of fully utilising our gas resources to uplift our economy.”
President Buhari added that later this year, Nigeria will host the 4th International Petroleum Summit in Abuja.