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Buhari: Nigeria will become industrialised nation through gas sector

BY Haleem Olatunji

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President Muhammadu Buhari says his administration will transform Nigeria into an industrialised nation through the gas sector.

He spoke on Monday at the pre-summit conference of the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit (NIPS) and the official launch of the ‘Decade of Gas in Nigeria’.

Buhari said the declaration of the decade of gas will set the tone for the development of the industry in the next ten years.

The president said with the country’s potential of about 600 trillion cubic feet of gas, the commodity has the potential to diversify Nigeria’s economy.

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“The rising global demand for cleaner energy sources has offered Nigeria an opportunity to exploit gas resources for the good of the country. We intend to seize this opportunity,” he said.

Buhari said Nigeria is blessed with more gas than oil but the country has focused more on the latter over the years.

He said his administration is committed to confronting the status quo by improving gas development and utilisation.

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“That is the paradox that this administration decided to confront when we declared the year 2020 as ‘The Year of Gas’ in Nigeria,” he said.

“It was a bold statement to demonstrate the resolve of this administration that gas development and utilisation should be a national priority to stimulate economic growth, further improve Nigeria’s energy mix, drive investments, and provide the much-needed jobs for our citizens in the country.

“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 industrialised nation with gas playing a major role and we demonstrated this through enhanced accelerated gas revolution.”

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‘NLNG HAS GENERATED $114BN’

The president said Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) has so far generated $114 billion in revenue, $9 billion in taxes, $18 billion in dividends for the government, and $15 billion in feed gas purchase.

Buhari said these achievements were accomplished with 100 percent Nigerian management and 95 percent Nigerian workforce.

Highlighting some of the achievements recorded in the gas sector under his administration, Buhari said the federal government has commenced the development of gas infrastructure along with the domestic utilisation of LPG and CNG.

“We also kick-started other policies and projects like the National Gas Expansion Programme, Autogas policy and the construction of the 614km Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano gas pipeline,” he said.

“After a thorough review of these laudable achievements and successes in the gas space, we acknowledge that Nigeria still has more work to do in the gas space.

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“This has led the federal government to begin a more proactive push towards gas development. This initiative will ensure further optimal exploitation and utilisation of the country’s vast gas resources.”

Buhari commended the collaboration between the federal ministry of petroleum resources, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Nigeria LNG Limited to actualise the dream of transforming Nigeria with its massive gas resources.

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