Nigeria’s $5 Billion LNG Project Nears Completion Despite Gas Supply Challenges.

The project will boost Nigeria’s gas production and export capacity, but also faces some hurdles in securing feed gas supply.

by Motoni Olodun

Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited has announced that its Train-7 project, a major expansion of its gas liquefaction plant, has reached 52% completion. The project, expected to boost Nigeria’s gas production and export capacity, has also created over 8,000 jobs for Nigerians.

The update was shared during a recent engagement session between NLNG management, led by Managing Director Dr. Philip Mshelbila, and the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Simbi Wabote. The session also featured the signing of an agreement on the oil and gas e-marketplace, an electronic platform that enhances transparency and efficiency in the tender process.

The Train-7 project, located in Finima, Bonny Island, Rivers State, is estimated to cost $5 billion and will add a seventh LNG processing unit with a capacity of 4.2 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to the existing six units, which have a combined capacity of 22 mtpa. The project is expected to be completed by 2024 and will increase NLNG’s total capacity to 30 mtpa, making it one of the largest LNG plants in the world.

The project is part of Nigeria’s Decade of Gas initiative, which aims to harness the country’s abundant gas resources for domestic and industrial use, as well as for export. Nigeria has the ninth-largest proven gas reserves in the world, with about 200 trillion cubic feet (tcf), but only utilises about 25% of it, mainly for power generation and flaring.

However, the Train-7 project faces challenges, especially securing adequate and reliable feed gas supply from the upstream sector. Dr. Mshelbila expressed concerns that the necessary deepwater gas projects required to supply feed gas for Train-7 and future expansions have not been activated by international oil and gas companies (IOCs). This could result in the project being completed without a gas source.

He also revealed that the current six units are operating at less than 50% of their potential capacity due to prolonged issues in gas supply caused by pipeline vandalism, facility failures, and reduced production from ageing wells. To address these challenges, he outlined various strategies, including collaborating with security agencies, working with joint venture partners, and procuring gas from international and indigenous producers.

He also called for the review of the production sharing contracts (PSCs) governing deepwater exploration, which he said do not offer commercially viable terms for gas producers. He said the company aspires to establish Train-8, but the absence of a clear gas source hampers its progress.

The Train-7 project is one of the few major investments in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector in recent years amid low oil prices, regulatory uncertainty, and security risks. The project is expected to have significant economic and social benefits for the country, such as increasing government revenue, creating employment opportunities, enhancing local content development, and reducing gas flaring and greenhouse gas emissions.

The project is also expected to contribute to Nigeria’s energy transition and climate change mitigation efforts, as gas is considered a cleaner and cheaper alternative to oil and coal. Nigeria is a signatory to the Paris Agreement and has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 20% by 2030.

Source: Nairametrics

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