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The Minister of State, Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva, has officially flagged off activities of the National Gas Expansion Programme (NGEP) conceived and designed to serve as a catalyst for adding value to the vast natural gas reserves that this great country is endowed with.
Business Hilights recalls that over the years, Nigeria has had various initiatives aimed at diversifying the hydrocarbon based economy with the view to promoting economic development and improving the social well-being of our citizens, but never gets it to maturity stage.
However, in his remarks during the inauguration of the Programme in Abuja, the Minister made it clear that “The objective of the programme is to reinforce and expand domestic gas supply and stimulate demand through the effective and efficient mobilization and utilization of all available assets, resources and infrastructure in the country.”
He charged the Programme officials to among other thing, “ensure strict compliance with the terms of reference of this committee which among others include; the identification of existing policy, legal and regulatory frameworks and commercial instruments that are hindering the development of the local gas sector.
Other mandates given to members of the NGEP include “Reforming and implementing the promotion of a market structure in a manner that will ensure the utilization of gas infrastructure, assets and facilities on a common carrier and co-sharing basis, establishment and implementation of strategies that will promote cost effective distribution of the various gas streams by marine, rail and road for achieving a most affordable, available, acceptable and accessible gas to Nigerians.
The Minister also charged the team to engage all state and non-state actors in sensitization programmes on all aspects of safety in relation to gas utilization in the country.
He further recalled that “The establishment of this committee is in line with the consolidated road-map of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources 2019 – 2023 under the 9 strategic priority areas under my leadership,” stressing that “This particular initiative is significant as it is expected to contribute towards the implementation of Mr. President’s June 12 promise to take 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within the current decade.”
“NGEP if effectively implemented has the capacity to reduce poverty by making locally available, produced, affordable and accessible fuel to mostly under-served communities in the country, thus contributing to job creation and human capital development through new investments in the gas sub-sector.
Chief Sylva made it clear to the members that “Your nomination for this important assignment should be considered as a call to national service. I implore you to take this task with utmost seriousness, commitment and a privilege to contributing to Mr. President’s Next Level Agenda.”
Explaining more in an interview, Technical Adviser to the Minister on Gas Business and Ploicy, who doubles as the program Manager of NGFCP, Mr Justice Derefaka said “Recall that the Federal Government had earlier declared 2020 as the Nigeria Year of gas Revolution.
“The inauguration of the NGEP is another testament that the Minister of Petroleum Resources, His Excellency, Chief Timipre Sylva is on point to fast-tracking the Nigeria Gas Revolution,” Derefaka averred.
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