The Federal Government has declared Jan. 1, 2021 to Dec. 31, 2030 as “The Decade of Gas Development for Nigeria”.
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, made the declaration on Thursday at the Seventh Joint International Energy Forum and International Gas Union (IEF-IGU) Ministerial Gas Forum in Malaysia.
Sylva said at the virtual meeting that Nigeria had made laudable achievements and successes in the gas space within the year under review and undeniably making 2020 “The Year of Gas” count.
He however, acknowledged that Nigeria still had more work to do post 2020.
According to him, the development of Nigeria’s vast gas resources and strengthening of the gas value chain is the Federal Government’s national priority as encapsulated in the National Gas Policy of 2017.
Sylva said, “In that regard, we are pursuing programmes to grow our gas economies through the development of industrial and transport gas markets, in juxtaposition with gas-to-power initiatives.
“We believe gas will become the dominant fuel for generating power not only in Nigeria but in Africa as well.
“We have commenced the implementation of carefully conceived initiatives to foster productivity and attract investments along the gas value chain.
“This includes the promotion of natural gas usage in Nigeria thereby creating alternative fuel choices for Nigerians.
“Substituting traditional white products with gas will cushion the effects of deregulation and create enormous job opportunities for Nigerians.”
He said this was expected to stimulate economic growth, further improve Nigeria’s energy mix, drive investments, and provide jobs in the country.
Sylva said the government had demonstrated its commitment towards the objective through policies and projects like the National Gas Expansion Programme, autogas policy and the construction of the 614km Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) gas pipeline.
The minister maintained that assessment of 2020 as “The Year of Gas” had showed the need for implementation of policies that would remove barriers affecting investment and development in the gas sector.
Sylva noted that government could not do it alone, adding that collaboration was needed from all stakeholders and host communities to transform Nigeria into a gas-based industrialised nation.
By Peace Obi with agency report