The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, on Tuesday called for the effective implementation of the gas to power master plan to fast track the economic development of Nigeria.
Nebo, who was represented by Frank Edozie, Senior Special Assistant to the Minister on Gas, at the ongoing Nigeria Oil and Gas Conference and Exhibition in Abuja, stressed the need to reduce gas flaring and channel the gas for domestic use.
The minister said that the Federal Government, through legislation and the launch of the gas master plan, had been able to reduce the menace of gas flaring in the country.
He said the gas master plan, if properly implemented, would ensure the effective exploitation and management of Nigeria’s gas sector for the benefit of Nigerians.
“The gas master plan has three key strategies which include stimulating multiplier effect of gas in the domestic economy and this will be facilitated through the gas to power project.
“It will also help position Nigeria competitively in the gas export market and guarantee long term energy security in Nigeria,’’ he said.
Nebo said the power sector remains the largest consumer of gas in the domestic economy, and stressed the need to develop the financial muscle to buy the gas at competitive price.
He said the issue of paying for gas at a competitive price had been a major challenge for the power sector, and expressed optimism that the situation would be gradually resolved with the privatisation of the sector.
The minister said the introduction of a sector-based pricing intervention was conceived in the short-medium- term to ensure the realisation of the gas to power plan.
Nebo called on stakeholders in the power, oil and gas sector to build a more formidable synergy in the realisation of the gas to power plan.
He noted that Nigeria had transited from a demand constrained gas market to primarily a supply constrained one, hence the need for all hands to be on deck.
The minister, who noted the high rising prices of gas in the international market, stressed the need for the domestic market to also be able to buy the gas at competitive price.
According to him, the Federal Government will continue to create the enabling environment for the Generating and Distributing Companies (Gencos and Discos) to thrive.
Earlier, NNPC Group Executive Director, Gas, David Ige, said the corporation was working round the clock to ensure availability of gas for the power plants.
Ige, however, said there was need to accelerate the various projects on gas pipeline infrastructure so that the new Independent Power plants could fully come on stream.