By Oscarline ONWUEMENYI
ABUJA – As Nigeria’s Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison_Madueke, continues her interactive sessions with various stakeholders, as part of events lined up for her participation in the ongoing meeting of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, Nigeria’s message of hope for the oil and gas sector to the international community has continued to dominate the discussions.
Alison_Madueke who is making history in Vienna, Austria, in her first appearance and as OPEC’s first female minister_member, told the world about Nigeria’s success story from the implementation of some far reaching reforms since her assumption of office about four Months ago.
As Nigeria’s first female Petroleum Minister, the OPEC conference affords Alison_Madueke a unique opportunity to highlight the turn_around achievements of her ministry and the President Goodluck Jonathan_led government, especially in the oil and gas sector.
Specifically, the minister who had a successful career with world leading oil giant, Shell, before her appointment as a minister, is heading the Nigerian delegation to the conference with a catalogue of visible progress so far made, which she titles, “Third Quarter Highlights of the Administration’s Achievement in Oil and Gas Sector”.
A statement from the ministry in Abuja on Thursday, aid the minister has successfully concluded the implementation of the most aggressive reform of the Nigerian domestic gas pricing.
This includes Gas_to_Power pricing, which has been revised to more sustainable commercial levels that now incentivise sustained gas supply development and growth as well as pricing from gas suppliers to Wholesale and Local Distribution Companies (LDC) manufacturing industries that is also revised.
The aggressive reform in the sector also led to the creation of a framework for a negotiated pricing arrangement between Wholesale LDC and the inclusion of end user manufacturing industries which is now at implementation level.
While all price changes are being implemented immediately, the new pricing regime is expected to incentivise supply growth from upstream gas suppliers, ensure predictability, affordability and availability of gas for the manufacturing sector, thereby creating a platform for sustained economic growth in the country.
The policy has also resulted into further progress in the negotiation and implementation of world class bankable Gas Supply Agreements (GSPA) for Nigerian Market such as the progressed GSPA negotiations with Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN; the commencement of GSPA negotiations with the Niger Delta Power Holding Company of Nigeria.
During the period under review, the minister said she has led an aggressive reform, which is seriously galvanising a major gas based industrialisation agenda for Nigeria, which has led to some investors planning to build two world scale fertilizer plants in the country. These are the one million metric tonnes per annum fertilizer plant in Koko, Delta State and another of similar size in Lagos.
Furthermore, she said the Gas Aggregation Company of Nigeria has commenced due diligence assessment of companies as a prelude to the negotiation of a gas supply agreement, while also commencing negotiations on feedstock natural gas liquids, NGL, pricing with two world class potential investors that plan to build two petrochemical plants with a capacity of about 450KTPA Polypropylene/Polyethylene complex and plastics conversion complex in Nigeria.