Dr Philip Mshelbila, Managing Director, Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (NLNG) has called on the Federal Government to increase investments on gas production to achieve its energy transition plan.
Mshelbila stated this during the visit of Ekperikpe Ekpo, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas), to the NLNG plant in Bonny, Rivers.
This is contained in a statement issued by NLNG’s Acting Manager, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.
The managing director said the Federal Government must be deliberate in its adoption of gas as a transition fuel to overcome the challenges in the nation’s energy sector.
“So, as we embark on the journey to complete Train 7, we are on the precipice of achieving a remarkable milestone – a capacity of 30 Million Tonnes Per Annum (MTPA).
“This accomplishment will not only reposition us as one of the largest single-site operations globally but potentially among the top three worldwide in terms of capacity at a single site.
“It is an achievement that elevates Nigeria’s standing, placing us among the top six nations in this crucial industry,” he said.
He said the world was evolving at an unprecedented pace, as recent events, such as the Russian/Ukraine war, had ushered in a wave of new developments in the gas sector.
According to him, the conflict and other dynamic changes in the global energy industry was likely to increase Nigeria’s rankings as more countries make substantial investments in LNG production.
“This is why we believe it is important for us to conclude Train 7 and begin to look beyond that for further expansion.
“Currently, the biggest challenge we have, one that poses a threat not only to our existing operations but also to our expansion plans, is feed gas supply.
“Trains 1 to 6 currently operate at half their capacity, a situation that has persisted for some time.
“Crude oil theft has affected associated gas supply resulting in our plant being half-full. Not because we don’t have the capacity but because the feed gas is not there,” he added.
Mshelbila said the company had ambition for the Train 8 but could not make progress with the project due to no clear sight of where the gas would be sourced from.
He said the gas could, however, be sourced from deep water but that the Federal Government needs to address the Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) that govern deep-water exploration in the country.
“At present, the PSCs that govern deep-water exploration do not offer commercially viable terms for producers.
“However, our commitment to harnessing the immense potential of natural gas will not only restore Nigeria’s reputation as a major energy powerhouse but also propel us to a cleaner/greener future,” he said.
Speaking, Ekpo said the Federal Government was fully committed to restoring Nigeria’s energy plans to enable the country to compete favorably among its peers globally.
The minister gave the assurance that the government would continue to encourage engagements of stakeholders to resolve gas supply and security issues in the country.
“So, all hands must be on deck to stop the loss of revenue and missed opportunities, as we continue to engage with investors to tap into our huge gas reserves.
“NLNG stand as a leading light to Nigeria’s quest to become an energy-efficient country where clean energy, including gas is utilized is commendable.
“The present administration will do everything possible to address the issues for the good of this country and benefit for our future generations,” he stated.