FG Unfolds Gas Revolution Agenda For Nigeria's Industrialization

Source: SAINT MUGAGA. - thewillnigeria.com

ABUJA, March 20, (THEWILL) - The Federal Government today unfolded a major plan to fast-track Nigeria’s industrial rebirth through a gas revolution anchored on the construction of two world scale petrochemical plants, two fertilizer plants, five fertilizer blending plants, a methanol plant and a Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) distribution plant.

Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke told journalists at a press parley in Abuja that the administration of President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan is determined to use the vast gas resources in the country as a catalyst for the aggressive industrialization of Nigeria.

She said the Gas Revolution which is aimed at achieving significant improvement in power availability for all and repositioning of Nigeria as the undisputed regional hub for gas-based industries would engender an unprecedented growth in Nigeria’s gas supply from the current 1 billion cubic feet per day to over 10 billion cubic feet per day by 2020.

Providing details of the Federal Government’s gas-driven industrialization agenda which is billed to be launched this Thursday by the President, Mrs. Alison-Madueke said the petrochemical and fertilizer projects which will attract over $10 billion Foreign Direct Investment between 2012 and 2014 would have a huge impact on the Nigerian economy.

“Globally, the petrochemical value chain is known as a major creator of employment. Based on our planned investment in the 1.3 million tonne per annum capacity petrochemical plant, it is estimated that over 200,000 direct and indirect jobs will be created,” the minister explained.

Speaking further on the economic benefits the gas to fertilizer project, Mrs. Alison-Madueke stated that the fertilizer plants are strategically planned to impact positively on the agricultural sector to create agricultural revolution that would make food available and affordable to millions of Nigerians.

“More importantly, however, is the explosion in employment creation that will arise from the boost in agricultural productivity and the related agro and food processing industries that will emerge. Over 500,000 jobs are estimated from this agriculture-related agenda as well as an attendant increase in the nation’s GDP,” she added.

In order to meet the gas need required for the massive industrialization program of the administration, the minister reiterated the Federal Government’s decision to intensify exploration for hydrocarbons in the inland sedimentary basins consisting of Anambra Basin, Bida Basin, Dahomey Basin, Gongola/Yola Basin, Sokoto Basin, the Middle/Lower Benue Trough and the Chad Basin, using the latest seismic technology including electromagnetic surveys.

“By enhancing the prospectivity of these basins, we hope to build significant supply bases across the various geopolitical zones that complement the existing gas supply centres in the Niger Delta” she stated.

Alison-Madueke further explained that besides the critical Calabar-Ajaokuta-Kano gas pipeline proposed to link the existing gas zones to other parts of the country, additional spur lines originating from the envisaged new supply centres in the inland basins to enhance the growth of local supply and consumption.

Other dignitaries present at the event include the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Engr. Goni Sheikh, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Engr. Austen Oniwon and other top management executives of the NNPC.