Contrary to the thinking that Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), also known as cooking gas, is only for a certain class of people, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has stated that the LPG market in Nigeria has room for everyone to operate.
Dr. Maikanti Baru, The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, made this assertion at the Argus West Africa LPG Conference which held today in Abuja.
The GMD who was represented by his Technical Assistant, Downstream, Mr. Abdulkabir Ahmed, contended that the challenges faced in the nation’s LPG sector provide opportunities for people from all strata of the Nigerian society to make a fortune.
According to the GMD, the infrastructural bottlenecks and lack of institutional and commercial regulatory framework which bedeviled the gas sector could be exploited and converted into wealth-creating opportunities.
“We see the need to put in place relevant policies and regulations to stimulate the industry and encourage LPG utilization, while the infrastructure deficits provide opportunities for investments to play critical roles in the industry. From large scale to medium and small scale enterprises, there is a place for everyone in the Nigerian LPG business landscape”, he stated.
Dr. Baru expressed concern that stakeholders were still not forthcoming with solutions to unlock the economic potentials the LPG sector.
“As we speak today, Nigerian energy mix is dominated by biomass-based fuels which account for about 82 per cent while Natural Gas accounts for just 8.8%. This implies a very high potential for explosive growth in the LPG business which will enable more players to come onboard”, he said.
He said the Corporation was currently implementing some key initiatives aimed at consolidating and expanding its footprint across the LPG business value chain, adding that nation’s LPG production would increase to about 5million tons per annum from the current 3million tons upon the completion of the ongoing projects.
He called on other stakeholders to invest in the sector as the corporation was committed to the accelerated development of the domestic gas market to significantly drive the multiplier effect of gas.
Also speaking, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Designate of the NLNG Shipping Management Limited (NSML), Mr. Ahmed Abdulkadir, affirmed that in spite of the numerous challenges facing the LPG sector, NLNG had recorded significant progress in the last 10 years and was committed to the LPG market.
The Executive Secretary, Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), who was represented by Mr. Agbaje Olusupo, General Manager, Gas & Renewable Energy, said the agency would keep to its regulatory mandates to ensure fair play in the LPG market, adding that the product had been deregulated.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Senior Vice President, Argus UK, Mr. Phil Shaw, commended the NNPC for its sound initiatives and critical roles in building a gas-driven economy.
He also appreciated the active support of the corporation towards organizing the first Argus LPG Conference in West Africa.