Story by Olabode Jegede
The federal government has reaffirmed its commitment to rehabilitate the Warri, Port Harcourt and Kaduna refineries to achieve local production of 360,000 million tonnes per annum, MTPA of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) by 2023.
The Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr. Timipre Sylva, represented by his Technical Adviser on Gas Business and Policy Implementation, Mr. Justice Derefaka, made the disclosure at the Nigeria LPG Summit 2019 in Lagos.
He stated that the move was part of the National Gas Policy of the government, adding that the government was desirous of deepening LPG penetration in the country, as only about five per cent of the nation populations were currently using LPG as energy source.
He noted that other plans by the government include upgrading the Lagos-Apapa LPG Plant from 4,000MT to 8,000MT storage and increasing LPG allocation to the domestic market from Natural Gas Liquids (NGLs) to reduce butane/propane exports.
He stressed that the government also aims to diversify supply sources with 110,160MTPA from Nigerian Petroleum Development Company’s Oredo facility expected to come on stream by first quarter of 2020.
According to him, “By our 2018 record, gas utilisation is being deepened by increasing LPG penetration. LPG consumption increased by about 16 per year on year. A total of 364 LPG plants licences and approvals were issued in 2018. This is expected to give about 15 per cent rise in the nation’s LPG consumption based on storage capacity. We need to deliver the much-needed energy for development and growth.
“We need to explore ways and means to scale through the Nigeria energy hurdle and put in place strategic measures to address the downside issues, challenges, gaps and aggressively pursue the upside opportunities.”
Sylva, while lauding NLPGA for creating a platform for stakeholders to interact, noted that the government would continue to provide the enabling environment for both local and foreign investments in the sector to thrive.
Furthermore, Managing Director, Nigeria LNG Limited, Mr. Tony Attah, said that the company was committed to deepening the penetration of cooking gas to support environmental and human protection through the use of cleaner energy.
Attah, represented by Managing Director, NLNG Shipping Management Ltd (NSML), Mr. Abdulkadir Ahmed, noted the NLNG would continue to ensure product availability, accessibly and affordability.
“The company has recently began to explore the possibility of delivering LNG in addition to the LPG to the domestic market in line with the Federal Government’s aspirations on gas-based industrialisation in Nigeria
“With product availability and accessibility, we expect that more people will be employed in the value chain from the off takers to the major distributors and eventually retail outlets that get the products into the nooks and crannies of the nation.
Ultimately, more and more Nigerians will begin to appreciate the value that cooking gas has over other unhealthy cooking fuels and they will embrace the commodity,” he stated.