The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Thursday in Abuja said it had tendered the construction of 650 kilometres Northern gas line network to contractor-financiers for bidding.
The NNPC Group Managing Director, Dr Maikanti Baru, said this at an interactive session with newsmen at the 2017 Annual Society of Petroleum Engineers/Oloibiri Lecture Series and Energy Forum.
Baru said the gas line would run from Ajaokuta in Kogi to Abuja, Kaduna and then Kano and the exercise would be concluded by the end of the second quarter of 2017.
He disclosed that the 123-kilometre East/West Obiafo/Obirikom to Oben called (OB3) pipeline and the looping of Escravos-Lagos Gas Pipeline System from Warri to Lagos would also be completed by the end of 2017, and July 2017 .
“The Ajaokuta-Abuja-Kaduna-Kano pipeline is currently on tender. This project will soon be awarded under a contractor financing scheme.
“The pipeline is a typical example of public private partnership and it is being tendered and going to be funded by partners who would recover their investments from the operations of the pipeline.
“We intend that we should conclude the tenders latest by the end of second quarter; we are determined to conclude most of the processes.
“The line from its project schedule is expected to run 187 kilometres from Ajaokuta to Abuja, 193 kilometres from Abuja to Kaduna, 65 kilometres from Kaduna to Zaria, and then the balance from Zaria to Kano,’’ Baru said.
He said the current operational challenges experienced in the power sector could limit gas generation companies (Gencos) from increasing their outputs to 6,000 megawatts, if not addressed.
“As we speak today, there is enough gas to generate about 4,800MW and 6,000MW by Q2 2017 based on our gas supply plan.
“However, the power sector is presently struggling to evacuate 4,500MW power due to Discos’ incessant rejection of allocated load and transmission line constraints.’’
The lead speaker at the lecture, President of the Nigerian Gas Association, Mr Dada Thomas, pointed out flaws that hindered the sector from reaching its maximum potential.
Thomas said the lack of security of production assets, disrespect for contracts, low gas prices, financial troubles of the power sector, and low infrastructure had kept the country’s gas market from taking off profitably.
He said policies, which translated to benefits for citizens abroad and which they had been enjoying as far back as 1986, had still not seen the light of day in Nigeria.
He, however, said Nigeria would need about 10 billion dollars worth of investment to fully activate its gas masterplan.
The 2017 OLEF is the 26th in its series and it had as topic, ‘Domestic Gas Utilisation in Nigeria: From Producers to Users’. (NAN)