Construction of Train Seven of the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Company, for which a Final Investment Decision was taken shortly before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, has reached 26 percent stage, the Managing Director (MD), Dr Philip Mshelbila, said on Monday.
When completed, the new train or unit will expand the plant’s capacity by 35 percent, from 22 million tons per annum to 30 million tons per annum, the MD said.
He spoke in Lagos at the launch of a book, ‘From Storeroom to Boardroom’, written by a former MD of NLNG, Dr. Babs Omotowa.
The construction has so far taken over seven million man hours, without any safety incident, he said.
“We believe that in a few years’ time, we will complete that project,” Mshelbila said.
NLNG is a joint venture involving the former Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (now Company), Shell Gas, Total, and Eni. In addition to LNG, it also produces 5Mtpa of condensate per annum.
The owners of the company took the Final Investment Decision to go ahead with the Train 7 project in December 2019, with the cost of the project put at US$ 6.5bn, while another $5 billion is expected to be spent on wells and pipelines to be connected to the plant.
Unlike in the early days of the NLNG, when the company was struggling to secure markets for its gas, recent developments in the world, including the Russia-Ukraine war, are creating demand for the nation’s gas.
“Somebody spoke earlier about how we begged Germany to buy our gas at the very beginning. Two weeks ago, I hosted the EU and people from the German Embassy in Bonny to do a plant visit because they wanted out gas,” Mshelbila said.
He disclosed that the flagship gas company is currently focusing on a couple of areas concerning the future, chief of which is the energy transition. That future is the future of NLNG, which is also the future of Nigeria “because NLNG contributes so much to Nigeria’s economy.
“And that future not only has to ensure that our product is cost-competitive, but also carbon-competitive because of climate change and the impact it has on the environment. So, energy transition is at the heart of what we are doing,” he said.
He said when he leaves, he hopes to hand over an NLNG that can become one of the 100-year-old companies that future generations can be proud of.