CNG Conversion: FG Offers N750,000 Subsidy Per Transporter

CNG Conversion: FG Offers N750,000 Subsidy Per Transporter

The Federal Government, on Thursday, met with transporters and stakeholders in the transportation sector in a bid to accelerate the adoption of Compressed Natural Gas and reduce the use of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol.

At the meeting in Abuja, it was revealed that it would cost between N1.2m and N1.5m for the kits required to convert the petrol or diesel-powered vehicle of a transporter to start running on CNG.

To encourage transporters to convert their vehicles, the government through the Presidential Compressed Natural Gas Initiative, declared that it would shoulder 50 per of this cost, which is between N600,000 and N750,000 per transporter.

President Bola Tinubu established the Presidential Compressed Natural Gas Initiative after declaring on May 29, 2023, that PMS “subsidy is gone!” The P-CNGI has since been tasked to deepen the use of CNG nationwide, based on the country’s abundant gas reserves.

Speaking at the meeting in Abuja, organised by P-CNGI and Portland Gas Limited in partnership with the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure, the Programme Director, P-CNGI, Michael Oluwagbemi, called for sustainable transportation through CNG adoption.

Oluwagbemi who spoke through an official of P-CNGI, Tosin Coker, assured transporters and other stakeholders at the meeting that the Federal Government would subsidise the funds required for the conversion of their vehicles.

“To reduce the cost of public transport, we are catalysing the sector by supporting the introduction of CNG buses and tricycles (Keke). In the next days you will witness these buses on the streets of Abuja, even as we also start to make conversion kits available at 50 per cent discount to the transport sector,” he stated.

On financing and enabling infrastructure, he explained that “in December 2023, we hosted our first investor forum, which saw tremendous participation from companies now investing in the sector. I am pleased to report that well over $50m has been mobilised directly by the sector since then, more than any amount mobilised in the last 10 years combined.

“We are also enabling ordinary Nigerians, particularly transport operators, to convert their vehicles. Last month, on May 29, we announced the Conversion Incentive Programme, making it easier for Nigerians to adopt CNG. This effort is supported by private sector partners, development funds, and banks, all eager to finance this transformative initiative.”

Delivering a presentation at the event, the Managing Director, Portland Gas, Folajimi Mohammed, revealed that it would cost between N1.2m and N1.5m to convert petrol or diesel-power vehicles to run on CNG.

“The cost of conversion can vary depending on the vehicle model, size of the CNG tank, and the conversion centre, but it typically ranges from N1.2m to N1.5m,” he stated.

On what the conversion process entails, he said, “The conversion involves installing a CNG tank, fuel lines, regulators, and other accessories in the vehicle. Certified CNG conversion centres handle the entire conversion process, which typically takes three hours. The vehicle’s existing petrol system is kept intact, allowing the driver to switch between petrol and CNG as needed.”

On whether there is any safety concern with CNG conversions, Mohammed said CNG tanks and systems are designed with robust safety features, making CNG a safe fuel option when installed by certified professionals.

He, however, noted that regular maintenance and inspection of the CNG system is recommended to ensure continued safe operation.

Commenting on the mileage difference between petrol and CNG, the Portland Gas boss said, “The average rule of thumb is that for every one litre of petrol, you can achieve 14km. In the case of CNG, 1scm (standard cubic meter) of gas would take you 18km.

“CNG-converted vehicles generally see a 10 to 20 per cent reduction in fuel efficiency compared to the original petrol version. However, the reduced fuel cost of CNG often offsets this mileage difference.”

He also stated that 1scm of CNG was about N200, while the average cost of one litre of petrol was N700, adding that “you will be saving more than 77 per cent of your normal cost for buying petrol when you run your car engine on dual-fuel (CNG and petrol or diesel).”

On how to find a gas station, Mohammed said, “You can use online tools and mobile apps to locate CNG refuelling stations in your area. Kindly note that availability of our station is underway.”

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