The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, says gas remains vital to Nigeria’s future in the global oil and gas sector.
The OPEC Secretary-General, Mohammad Barkindo, disclosed this on Monday in Abuja, at the pre-summit conference on “Decade of Gas”.
He said that the move of the country to develop its huge gas deposit was a step in the right direction.
“Gas is vital to Nigeria’s future, as is oil, and both will be fuels of choice globally for the foreseeable future and instrumental in facilitating the energy transition,” he said.
The secretary-general said that the ‘Decade of Gas’ from 2021 to 2030 was likely to place Nigeria at the forefront of the vital global industry.
Mr Barkindo commended President Muhammadu Buhari’s effort as Head of Nigeria’s Delegation to OPEC, in the organisation’s overarching commitment to sustainable market stability.
“This was clearly on display during the unprecedented oil market slump in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the President playing a leadership role in unifying the commitment of participants in the Declaration of Cooperation (DoC) and, in turn, helping pull the industry back from the brink.”
The OPEC scribe noted that the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) currently before the National Assembly was timely for the achievement of the decade of gas.
He said that the global primary energy demand was set to increase by 25 per cent in the period to 2045.
Mr Barkindo said that the world needs more energy, and Nigeria as a reliable and dependable supplier of hydrocarbons to global markets has a key role to play in this regard.
According to him, there is, at the same time, the ongoing energy transition and the associated challenge.
This, he said, includes ensuring there was enough energy supply to meet future demand growth and achieving this in a sustainable way, balancing the needs of people in relation to their social welfare, the economy, and the environment.
“Looking at the scale of the energy transition challenge, we need to utilise all resources efficiently.
“Tackling emissions has many pathways and we need to explore them all.
“The oil and gas industries are part of the solution; we possess critical resources and expertise that can help unlock our carbon-free future,” the secretary-general said.
Mr Barkindo said that, globally, to 2045, the organisation’s projections show that investments of more than $12 trillion would be needed in the upstream, midstream and downstream of the sector.
He commended the President for keeping faith in the sector with continued investments in critical gas projects such as the Ajaokuta–Kaduna–Kano Natural Gas Pipeline, and the Nigeria LNG Train 7 project.