By Michael Eboh
Abuja— The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, yesterday, accused Distribution Companies, DISCOs, and the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, of frustrating stable power supply in the country.
It also stated that the country currently had enough gas to generate up to 4,800 megawatts (MW) of electricity and 6,000 megawatts by the second quarter of 2017.
Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr. Maikanti Baru, stated this at the Oloibiri Lecture Series and Energy Forum, organized by the Society of Petroleum Engineers, SPE, in Abuja.
Baru noted that Nigeria was currently producing an average of 8.0 billion standard cubic feet, scfd, per day of gas, of which 1.3 billion scfd was utilised for domestic consumption; 3.5 billion scfd for export; 2.5 billion scfd for re-injection/fuel gas use, while about 700 million scfd was flared.
He said: “As we speak today, there is enough gas to generate about 4800MW and 6000MW by second quarter 2017 based on our gas supply plan, but the power sector is presently struggling to evacuate 4500MW power due to DISCOs’ incessant rejection of allocated load and transmission line constraints.”
Baru disclosed that despite the difficult environment in which it operates, the NNPC was committed to ensuring adequate gas supply to meet Nigeria’s industrial growth.
Also speaking, Mr. Dada Thomas, President, Nigerian Gas Association and Managing Director, Frontier Oil Limited, lamented that the country had not been able to harness its God-given gas resources optimally for domestic use.
According to him, the country is using a little amount of the gas it has, with the bulk of it being used by the power plants within the country’s poorly regulated power value chain that is threatening to bankrupt entity in the chain.
He said: “If we must unlock gas development, we are going to connect the dot of the production location, producers to the consumers and it is going to take a lot of money.
“If we are trying to actualize the gas master plan, we are going to need at least $10 billion.”
He further identified the five top issues bedeviling the gas industry to include insecurity, lack of sanctity of contracts, low pricing, power sector illiquidity and lack of infrastructure. For 40 years, we have been bedeviled by the same problem day in day out. We cannot go on like this.’’