Posted by By Michael Faloseyi, Abuja on
The plan by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and its joint venture partners to build a liquified natural gas project in....
The plan by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and its joint venture partners to build a liquified natural gas project in Olokola Free Trade Zone, took a firm root on Monday with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding by the project sponsors and the host states.
The MoU is a major step towards the realisation of the project. The agreement for its pre-front-end engineering design was reached in 2005.
The project, which straddles Ondo and Ogun states, is expected to deliver its first LNG by 2011.
NNPC holds 49.5 per cent equity stake in the project, while ChevronTexaco and the Shell Petroleum Development Corporation hold 18.5 equity participation each.
Other sponsors of the project are British Gas that has 13.5 per cent equity and the Nigeria Exporting Processing Zone Authority that will facilitate infrastructure in the free trade zone.
The governors of the two states – Dr. Olusegun Agagu and Otunba Gbenga Daniel – were at the NNPC corporate headquarters in Abuja to sign the MoU.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, the Project Coordinator, Dr. Funmi Coker, said that the discussions on the details of the business relationships would start on Thursday and that the technical details of the project would be completed by December 2006.
He said that the project would be registered as a business enterprise following the signing of the MoU on Monday.
It is also expected to deliver about 700 megawatts of electricity to the national grid at completion.
About 10,000 employment opportunities would be generated at the project construction stage.
It is also expected to attract some other ancillary service provision enterprises to the zone.
In his comment at the occasion, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mr. Funsho Kupolokun, said that the project would rank as one of the biggest gas project’s.
He said that Nigeria would export over two million barrels of oil equivalent from the OK LNG and five other gas projects by 2012 when most of the gas projects would have started production.
Kupolokun said that the concept adopted for. OK LNG was similar to the other gas projects in the country and would aid electricity generation.
In his comments, Daniel assured the project sponsors of a peaceful operating environment.
He said that the host communities had been informed of the need to cooperate with the sponsors.
According to him, the project will assist the state in addressing the problem of unutilised manpower, as it will absorb some of the graduates from the 10 tertiary institutions in the state.
His Ondo State counterpart, Agagu, also said that the project would uplift his state’s economy.
He said that the project would assist the government in its pursuit of industrial development in the area.
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