The NLNG Board of Directors has approved an increase in the company’s dedicated volume of domestic Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) supply from 350,000 to 450,000 metric tonned per annum, the Chief Executive Officer, NLNG, Tony Attah has disclosed.

Attah who spoke at the BusinessDay Energy Series on Tuesday said that the company remained a major influencer in the domestic LPG sector.

“Our focus is to support the use of cleaner energy to protect our citizens and the environment from the hazards posed by other cooking fuels by encouraging the use of cooking gas,” he said at the BusinessDay Energy Series.

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“We have dedicated 350,000 metric tonnes of LPG to the market helping to raise the total consumption from the initial 70,000 tonnes in 2007 prior to NLNG getting involved.

He said the NLNG would also help Nigeria preserve foreign exchange used for kerosene importation as well as reduce deforestation.

 “We are fully committed to delivering cleaner energy and to protect our citizens and the environment from the hazards of smoke inhalation while cooking with firewood and other sources of fuel which on record accounts for over 100,000 deaths in Nigeria, mainly women and children just trying to put food on the table.

“We are set to reverse this trend and to change the narrative with LPG, in addition to helping Nigeria preserve Forex from Kerosene importation and reducing deforestation.

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“Also, our domestic LNG (DLNG) initiative is a deliberate effort to enhance access to a healthy, safe and cleaner energy source, which is a dire need in Nigeria today.  

“Consistent with NLNG’s vision of helping to build a better Nigeria, the initiative will support the economic development of the country and industralisation,” he said

He described the slow pace in the development of infrastructure as a great concern, Attah said, “Current gas transportation infrastructure is a bottleneck to domestic gas supply.

“There is need for an aggressive gas infrastructure blueprint and backbone pipeline infrastructure development such as the AKK pipeline currently being financed by Federal Government.”

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According to him, gas-based industries suffer from frequent gas supply outages due largely to vandalism, militancy and sabotage.

He said, “The need to provide more security for the protection of oil and gas assets and infrastructure cannot be overemphasised in order to encourage investment in gas development, production, processing and transportation/distribution.

“A fixed/regulated gas price does not guarantee willing seller/buyer arrangement which will engender firm investments and returns. Under-investment in gas exploration, appraisal and development activities is a major challenge.

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“There is paucity of investment in gas processing facilities as well due to inconsistent policies, unattractive commercial framework, security of investments, etc. All these have led to a decline or stagnation in gas reserves, production, and commercialisation.”

According to Attah, frequent violation of contracts and payment obligations with no recourse for redress is a major impediment.

He said legal frameworks needed to be strengthened to curb this.

He said, “Inconsistencies in government policies discourage investments and fuels violation of contracts. Agencies of government need to be aligned to deliver long term aspirations beyond immediate and short-term revenue targets.

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Liquidity issues facing the power sector has a direct impact on the liquidity of the entire gas sector.”

He added that the deregulation of the power sector by adopting the ‘willing seller and willing buyer’ philosophy would guarantee commercial tariffs that would sustain the industry and thus entrench development and utilisation of gas reserves.

By Peace Obi

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