The Federal Government says it will rehabilitate the Warri, Port Harcourt and Kaduna Refineries to achieve local production of 360,000 MTPA of Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG, by 2023.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr Timipre Sylva, made the disclosure at Nigeria LPG Summit 2019 in Lagos on Wednesday.
The summit, jointly organised by the Nigeria Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association, NLPGA and LPG Summit, based in Singapore has the theme, “LPG: Harmonising Development and Growth in Nigeria and Africa”.
The minister, who was represented by his Technical Adviser on Gas Business and Policy Implementation, Mr Justice Derefaka, said the move was part of the National Gas Policy of the government.
Sylva said the government was desirous of deepening LPG penetration in the country, noting that only about five per cent of its population were currently using LPG as energy source.
He said other plans by the government include upgrading the Lagos-Apapa LPG Plant from 4,000MT to 8,000MT storage and increasing LPG allocation to the domestic market from Natural Gas Liquids, NGLs to reduce butane/propane exports.
According to him, the government also aims to diversify supply sources with 110,160MTPA from Nigerian Petroleum Development Company’s Oredo facility expected to come on stream by first quarter of 2020.
“By our 2018 record, gas utilisation is being deepened by increasing LPG penetration. LPG consumption increased by about 16 per year on year.
“A total of 364 LPG plants licences and approvals were issued in 2018. This is expected to give about 15 per cent rise in the nation’s LPG consumption based on storage capacity.
“We need to deliver the much-needed energy for development and growth.
“We need to explore ways and means to scale through the Nigeria energy hurdle and put in place strategic measures to address the downside issues, challenges, gaps and aggressively pursue the upside opportunities,” he said.
Sylva, while lauding NLPGA for creating a platform for stakeholders to interact, noted that the government would continue to provide the enabling environment for both local and foreign investments in the sector to thrive.
Also, Mr Tony Attah, Managing Director, Nigeria LNG Ltd., said the company was committed to deepening the penetration of cooking gas to support environmental and human protection through the use of cleaner energy.
Attah, represented by Mr Abdulkadir Ahmed, Managing Director, NLNG Shipping Management Ltd (NSML), said the NLNG would continue to ensure product availability, accessibly and affordability.
He said, “The company has recently begun to explore the possibility of delivering LNG in addition to the LPG to the domestic market in line with the Federal Government’s aspirations on gas-based industrialisation in Nigeria
“With product availability and accessibility, we expect that more people will be employed in the value chain from the off takers to the major distributors and eventually retail outlets that get the products into the nooks and crannies of the nation.
“Ultimately, more and more Nigerians will begin to appreciate the value that cooking gas has over other unhealthy cooking fuels and they will embrace the commodity.”
On his part, Mr Michael Kelly, Deputy Managing Director, World LPG Association (WLPGA), said the organisation would support the efforts of the government to increase gas utilisation in Nigeria.
Kelly said that Nigeria was one of the 20 countries where 2.3 billion people lacked access to modern fuels.
He added that this could be addressed with the right policies and regulatory framework and cooperation between government and private investors.