-By Olufunke Afolami
The current drive by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) to strengthen gas penetration and utilization across the country received a major boost recently with a signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the supply of gas to industry and investors in Nasarawa State.
The MoU which is primarily designed to assure5 that the state derive maximum value from the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) gas pipeline network was signed in Lafia by NNPC at Nasarawa Business Round Table organized to explore investments opportunities in the gas sector. Providing state update on the ongoing construction of the 614 kilometres AKK pipeline project the GMD/CEO of NNPC Limited, Mallam Mele Kyari emphasized that Nasarawa State is uniquely positioned to maximize value from the AKK pipeline as well as gas business opportunities.
Kyari highlighted and appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for his unwavering commitment to utilize gas as a major tool to drive economic development.
“The whole idea around the gas master plan is to make sure that this abandon gas that we have in our country is made available to all parts of this country and also monitise it so that we can put it into the export market so that this country can make money from it while creating wealth and prosperity in our country. It is a simple process to make sure that this gas reaches everywhere.”
Giving his views, Governor of Nasarawa State, Engr. Abdullahi Sule appealed to the indigene of Nasawara State to key into the opportunities around the gas value chain such as distribution, C&G stations, capital embedded power generation, LPG marketing, gas flare commercialization among others.
The Governor said, “I am looking forward for Nasarawa State having another opportunity initiated by the people of Nasarawa State and benefitted by the people of the state so that majority of those industry will be created.”
Speaking at the event, the Managing Director (MD) of GACN, Mr. Olalekan Ogunleye said the gas supply collaboration by the Nasarawa State Government, NNPC Limited and GACN has set up a clear framework through which investors and project Nasarwa State will access gas immediately via virtual pipelines power solutions CNG and LNG ahead of the AKK pipeline project.
The MD of GACN, made it known that “this step is designed round the unique peculiarities of Nasarawa State with the requirement of business owners, big projects and industrialists in Nasarawa State. It is actionable and specific.”
The Managing Director, Nigeria Gas Marketing Company (NGMC), Eze Justin Ezeala provided marketing perspective on the project. “We want to have commercial arrangement in gas business we want to be the preferred gas marketing company but for me and my team we would even go farther than this, we want to exceed customers’ satisfaction.”
The signing of the MoU which was the climax of well-organized Nasarawa Business Round Table was witnessed by the Governor, GMD/CEO of NNPC Limited, the Group Executive Director, NNPC Gas and Power Limited, Mr. Mohammed Ahmed, the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs of NNPC Limited, Mallam Garbadeen Mohammed and Chief Executive Officer of Axxela, Mr. Bolaji Osunsanya.
Also in attendance to witness the MoU include Mallam Isa Modibo, Chairman Nigeria Upstream Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) among other traditional rulers across the state.