Nigeria welcomes energy companies to invest in gas reserves

Mar 14, 2008 01:00 AM

Nigeria's government is looking for big-time investments for undeveloped reserves. The West African nation wants energy companies to pump $ 20 bn into the country's natural gas reserves.
The Nigerian government has presented a policy calling for explicit support that would "prioritize domestic gas supplies over export."

Nigeria holds some 260 tcf of natural gas, which constitutes a number that is triple to Nigeria's oil reserves. In a report dated April 2007, the US Energy Information Administration reported that Nigeria produced 770 bn cf in 2004 alone. The EIA claimed that "Nigeria flares more natural gas than any other country in the world."
"The government plans to raise earnings from natural gas exports to 50 % of oil revenues by 2010. However, NNPC estimates that $ 15 bn in private sector investments is necessary to meet its natural gas development goals by 2010."

A Nigerian government official stated in the report that producers would potentially need to offer to Nigeria as much as 25 % to 30 % of the gas they recover. The EIA report indicates that of the 770 bn cf produced in Nigeria, the country uses 325 bn cf.
The oil-rich country has been plagued by power shortages stemming from sabotage and inadequate supplies of electricity due to outdated power supply centres. Shell, Total, and ENI are the companies holding a stake in Nigeria's only export terminal.

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