The federal government said it will increase the country’s natural gas production to 10 billion standard cubic feet per day (bscfd) by 2019 with the implementation of the new roadmap for the oil and gas industry, tagged 7 Big Wins.
The current average daily production is 6.8bscf. The government also said it had secured over $2 billion commitment from potential investors in the Gas Export Processing Zone (EPZ) in Delta State.
The minister of state for petroleum resources, Ibe Kachikwu, disclosed this on the sidelines of the public presentation of short and medium-term priorities to grow Nigeria’s oil and gas industry in Abuja.
According to the minister, the roadmap provides a workable plan which would ensure that adequate infrastructure is put in place to ramp up the nation’s crude oil production while contributing positively in the area of gas-to-power by boosting gas production to 10bscfd by 2019.
Speaking on the gas revolution plan of the roadmap, Kachikwu said the programme woud contain “new infrastructure and gas terms that would encourage the roll-out of a national blueprint for backbone gas pipeline and processing infrastructure that will enable flexibility in supply delivery and provide a viable source of income for the country.”
While answering questions on what the government intends to do with the Gas Export Processing Zone (EPZ) in Delta State, which was said to have been abandoned, the minister disclosed that he had set up a team across the parastatals to drive the process of actualising the dream.
“The steering committee is just being set up and is going to be launched next week,” he stated, adding that his ministry had just finished consultations with the Delta State government.
He, however, identified paucity of funds as a constraint to delivering the project, explaining that he would not like to launch the programme until the money for its execution is available.
Kachikwu further disclosed that the government had secured commitments for close to $2 billion potential investment in the project. “Without the money, there is no need to be launching projects,” he stated.
Speaking further on development of gas export, he said, “My colleagues at the NCDMB are building close to five industrial parks in oil producing states and they are working hard at it.”
On Bonny Train 7, the minister of state said the project is also constrained by lack of money.
According to him, “the price of gas today is low, so anybody who is going to put money into gas development today needs to have really strong fiscals. That is not looking very encouraging, but the nice thing is that the NLNG has done very well and has access to be able to get facilities.”
“So we are going to be working with them on Train 7, as Train 7 is what we have commitment to. The president’s nostalgic feelings are that when they left many years ago, the plan was that 10 years ago, we should have been in Train 12. The fact that we wasted this much time when the prices were really very lucrative and supportive is a shame.
“But we are going to continue to keep working on the process. We are committed to doing that. We are driving that process. We are going to keep doing that,” he stated.