The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has expressed its determination to aggressively grow domestic gas utilization in-country to five billion cubic feet of gas per day from its current 1.7billion cubic feet of gas per day by 2022.
Chief Operating Officer, Gas and Power, Engr. Yusuf Usman, made this known while delivering a paper entitled: “Strategies for Ensuring Infrastructural Growth for a Robust Gas Industry and Utilization” at the Nigeria International Pipeline Technology and Security Conference in Abuja on Thursday.
Engr. Usman explained that domestic gas demand was expected to grow to 7.4billion cubic feet of gas per day by 2027.
“Based on all current known domestic gas supply projects, domestic gas supply is forecast to close the demand by 2021 as we have identified Seven Critical Gas Development Projects (7CGDP) currently being fast tracked to bridge the foreseen supply gap by 2021,” Engr. Yusuf submitted.
Engr. Usman stated that the completion of the three major domestic gas transmission systems would add 6.8billion cubic feet of gas per day capacity, saying that the 36- inch Escravos to Lagos Pipelines (ELPS) 1 and 2 with 2.2billion cubic feet per day capacity would be completed in the fourth quarter of this year.
He said the ongoing East to West connection via the 48-inch Obiafu Obrikom to Oben pipeline (OB3) with 2.4 billion cubic feet per day capacity would be completed in the first quarter of 2020, affirming also that the 40-inch Ajaokuta to Abuja to Kaduna to Kano (AKK) gas pipeline with 2.2billion cubic feet per day capacity would be completed in the fourth quarter of 2022.
The NNPC COO stated that the AKK, when completed, would unlock 2.2billion cubic feet per day capacity natural gas for the domestic market, add 3,600 megawatts of power to the national grid, revitalize over 232 industries and create over one million jobs for the people.
Engr. Usman posited that the AKK would also support the development of petrochemicals, fertilizer, methanol and other gas based industries that would generate more employment opportunities and facilitate balanced economic growth.
He added that the National Oil Company was also putting measures in place to develop 5 gigawatts of power generation by 2022 as part of efforts to support the current Federal Government aspiration to bridge the power deficit in the country.
Speaking on the strategy to developing gas infrastructure, the NNPC Gas and Power COO said the corporation had adopted the project financing scheme for AKK and other gas projects in order to meet the timelines.
He explained that the incorporated joint venture funding model was being adopted for the Assa North-Ohaji South (ANOH) project, describing the model as bankable and capable of boosting Nigeria’s domestic gas supply significantly.
Engr. Usman said meeting the gas infrastructure blueprint was, however, challenged by funding, project slippages, security concerns and rising debt from gas off-takers, limiting expansion of the network.
He stated that despite the challenges, natural gas remained a big catalyst for development and industrial growth, attributing it with the potential to position Nigeria as a regional hub for gas based industries.
The two-day conference was organized by the Pipelines Professional Association of Nigeria (PLAN) and had attracted participants from across the globe.