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FG working to make Nigeria regional hub for gas-based industries – NNPC

By on September 25, 2013

Dr David Ige, the Group Executive Director, Gas and Power Directorate of NNPC said that the federal government was working to position Nigeria as the regional hub for gas-based industries.

Ige who made this known on Tuesday in Abuja, at the Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Institute of Mechanical Engineers (NIMechE), Abuja Chapter, said such industries include petrochemicals, fertiliser plants , and ethanol industries among others.

Ige who is also the Patron of NIMechE, Abuja Branch was represented at the occasion by Mr Sam Sam Ndukwe, General Manager, Gas Pipeline, NNPC.

Ige said that the success of the federal government privatisation suggested that the pace of the country’s economic growth would be sustained while it could also expect a re-awakening of industrialisation soon given the various initiatives of government .

“Specifically in the gas sector, apart from growing gas for supply to Power plants, the government also aspires to

position Nigeria as the regional hub for gas based industries such as Petrochemicals, fertiliser industries, ethanol plants among others.

“These industries are at the heart of a massive industrialization programe of the country. As you are aware, over 70 per cent of everyday materials used in industries or at home is made out of petrochemicals.

“This implies that by making Nigeria the regional hub for petrochemicals, we will be able to stimulate the growth of numerous secondary industries such as packaging, pharmaceuticals and others.

“Fertiliser industries would also boost the availability of fertiliser to farmers, increasing agricultural yield with the attendant impact on the growth of agro-processing industries,’’ Ige said.

He said that the implication of the foregoing was a massive investment in infrastructure such as gas pipelines and numerous processing plants.

“For example, NNPC is driving the implementation of over 1500 km of gas pipelines, the biggest gas pipeline campaign in the history of Nigeria and this is expected to be completed by 2018.

“Similarly, the gas based industrialisation agenda is taking off with three fertiliser projects now gradually taking off and other industries expected to come in subsequent years are the petrochemicals, a central processing plant projects as well as others,’’ he said.

The Group Executive Director added that the aspiration of government was also to grow the power generation to 40GW in the medium term.

“This aspiration is being supported by massive investments in generation, transmission and distribution, coupled with a privatisation of the sector.

“The import of this is to improve availability of power, creating geographically dispersed economic growth as industries will spring up rapidly as a result.

“We are beginning to see results. Installed generation capacity is growing rapidly and will approach 10mw within 18 months and increase thereafter,’’ he said.

Ige noted that the above aspirations of government demanded for Engineers and engineering capability in the country to manage the expected industrial revolution.

He said that it will be the greatest failing of the nation to import engineering resources to deliver these programmes, “this is our moment and we must seize it.’’

He also urged the professional body elect new officers who would develop an agenda that would make mechanical engineering play the critical role in the transformation of the country. (NAN)