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Nigerian natural gas distribution company Oando Gas and Power PLC has signed an agreement with the Rivers State Government to operate and expand existing gas infrastructure in the greater Port Harcourt industrial areas
The agreement commits Oando to rehabilitation and operation of existing natural gas infrastructure at Trans-Amadi and expansion of the network to Choba Airport, the new UST area of Greater Port Harcourt City, Abuloma, Heliconia Park, Reclamation Road and other adjoining areas.
The existing gas pipeline has a throughput of about 40mmscm/annum, which currently serves industries in Trans-Amadi including Nigerian Bottling Company, First Aluminum Company and Stallion Foods. The development, which will deliver gas as a cheaper and environmentally-friendlier energy source to users, is expected to catalyse rapid industrial development and enhance the state’s economy.
Cheaper, reliable gas
Mr. Bolaji Osunsanya commented, “We are excited about this development which represents an opportunity for Rivers State to join the league of regions that have enjoyed strong industrial tenancy and economic growth through the adoption of cheaper and reliable gas as energy fuel. As a company, this is another major milestone in our quest to build sub-Saharan Africa’s largest natural gas pipeline grid in Nigeria and is in line with Oando’s principal aspiration of evolving home-grown solutions to Nigeria’s energy challenges. This development provides an immediate boost to our revenue profile starting from August 2011 resulting in additional value creation for our shareholders.”
Dr. George Nwolu stated, “This concession is a major milestone for the Rivers State Government and people of our great state. We are confident we have found capable partner in Oando Gas and Power, who brings wealth of experience from its other franchises and their commitment to infrastructure development as evident in the 128km gas pipeline built from Akwa Ibom to Cross River states. We have no doubt that this will signpost rapid economic development of the state as industries will be attracted by the availability of cheap and reliable fuel. This concession is specifically designed to help build indigenous capacity, improve community relations, corporate social responsibility and jobs creation for the people for Rivers State.”
Dr. Nwolu added; “Oando has worked assiduously throughout the negotiating process and have demonstrated diligence, professionalism and strong commitment to this project.”
Nigeria is rich in associated and non-associated gas reserves, estimated in excess of 180 trillion cubic feet, ranking currently as the eighth largest holder of proven natural gas reserves in the world. Unfortunately, local utilisation of gas is very low – a problem attributed to inadequate infrastructure that would enable supply of natural gas to last mile users in Nigeria.
Oando, through its subsidiary - Gaslink Nigeria Limited - has already developed distribution of natural gas via pipelines to industries in Nigeria. Its 100km gas pipeline network in Greater Lagos connects 110 customers. Another Oando subsidiary - East Horizon Gas Company (EHGC) - is presently completing a 128km natural gas transmission line traversing Akwa Ibom and Cross River States, to deliver gas to United Cement Company (UNICEM), and other industrial clusters in both states.