The Federal Government on Tuesday night announced its readiness to use gas to fast track Nigeria’s industrialisation agenda.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, announced this at a dinner with the diplomatic community in Abuja, as he noted that gas was the only single energy source that could help Nigeria diversify the economy.
Nigeria has a proven gas reserve of 206 trillion cubic feet with a potential upside of up to 600TCF.
Sylva said, “Energy is the basic resource for national socio-economic development and it must be secured at all times.
“As a result of its rising impact on national security and economy, the need to safeguard energy and ensure availability, reliability and affordability has made energy diplomacy an essential part of every country’s foreign cooperation.
“It is important to stress that Nigeria’s vehicle of choice on the energy transition journey is natural gas. Much has been done towards harnessing this huge potential to provide the energy needed for our growing population in terms of power generation, transport, feedstock for industries and clean cooking solutions.”
The minister stated that Nigeria’s energy poverty amidst enormous natural resources in the oil, gas and mining sectors was disheartening.
“It is disheartening that Nigeria is still energy-poor despite our enormous energy resources, which include over 200TCF of proven natural gas reserve with a potential upside of up to 600TCF,” Sylva stated.
He added, “Majority of our people still lack access to reliable electricity and clean cooking fuels, and our pursuit is to significantly reduce this menace, with the hope of ending energy poverty in the country soonest.”
Sylva told his audience that in order to reap the benefit of Nigeria’s gas resources, the government had deepened natural gas utilisation under the National Gas Expansion Programme.
“We have rolled out the Autogas scheme with the aim of displacing PMS with CNG and LPG. This will reduce PMS use and minimize CO2 emissions,” he stated.
The minister also pointed out that the Nigerian energy industry had undergone positive reforms with the passage of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021.