By Emmanuel Elebeke
ABUJA: Minister of National Planning, Abubakar Sulaiman, says Nigeria can generate about $10.38 billion (N1.7 trillion), if 50 per cent of the current kerosene users in Nigeria switch over to Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG by 2018.
Sulaiman stated this in Abuja, at the inauguration of the Inter- Ministerial Committee on Kerosene to Gas Initiative in Nigeria: The Indonesian Model.
The Minister, who was represented at the inauguration by the Acting Secretary to the Commission, Bassey Akpanyung explained that the adoption of the Indonesian model of kerosene to LP Gas initiative in Nigeria will greatly promote the wide usage of LPG over Kerosene, thereby boosting the economic activities.
“ Without doubt a vibrant LPG market in Nigeria will create a ripple effect that will translate into employment generation for the people, revenue generation for government, more demand for cylinders at all levels in the market, more business for SMEs, environment benefits as well as carbon credit earnings” He said.
He noted that “Globally, it is a well known fact that domestic LP Gas is a well accepted and long established source of energy for cooking but unfortunately it is still among the least used in the Nigeria’s household energy mix’’.
The Minister also added that, Nigeria has a proven reserve of 180 tcf of Natural Gas and is ranked 8th among countries with the largest proven Natural Gas deposits in the world, producing an average of 3.2 Million Metric Tonnes of LP Gas annually.
He lamented that despite the availability of LP Gas over other domestic fuel such as; kerosene, firewood, sawdust, charcoal, electricity etc, 90 percent of Nigeria’s household use firewood and kerosene (sources of carbon emission) as cooking fuel, pointing out that only about five percent of the population of over 160 million people use LP Gas.
Giving highlight on the advantages of the product, Dr Sulaiman said “the LPG is a product of crude oil refining and natural gas production consisting of two hydro-carbon gases: propane and butane. LP Gas is clean, portable, efficient, convenient and safe when used appropriately. It has relatively low emissions and can be used virtually everywhere ranging from household, commercial, industrial and transportation energy applications”.
He then tasked the committee to thoroughly examine the need for the adoption and implementation of the Indonesian model in Nigeria as a way of deepening economic growth and also come up with recommendations which will be studied and forwarded to higher authorities for further necessary actions.
On the other hand, the Nigerian Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association which is the Umbrella body of all stakeholders in LP Gas in Nigeria, has called for mass sensitization of the public in using LP Gas and also insist on enforcement of standards of cylinders to be distributed to the targeted group.