FG, stakeholders meet to crash cooking gas prices

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The Federal Government on Tuesday met with key stakeholders in the industry, to brainstorm ways to drastically lower the cost of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (cooking gas) in the country and increase its supply.

The cost of LPG, often known as cooking gas, increased to N1,300 per kilogramme in January, up from less than N500 in 2018.

Speaking at the stakeholder consultation meeting in Abuja, the Minister State for Petroleum Resources (Gas), Ekperikpe Ekpo, said he planned to reduce the cost of LPG in the country and give priority to its adoption and penetration.

According to Ekpo, this was to ensure that the product becomes more widely available, reasonably priced, and accessible for the general public.

He explained that the purpose of the stakeholders’ engagement was to harness the collective wisdom, experiences, and insights of key players in the private sector to secure a sustainable and thriving future for the country’s gas sector.

He said: “The energy landscape is evolving rapidly, and the decisions we make today will profoundly impact generations to come. We must be strategic, innovative, and adaptable. This engagement provides us with an invaluable opportunity to gain insights into the diverse perspectives that shape our industry.

“As we embark on this journey, I assure you that the Office of the Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas) is committed to developing an adaptable roadmap that reflects the collective intelligence of this gathering. We will listen attentively, learn collaboratively, and act decisively to create an environment that fosters growth, innovation, and sustainable development. In doing so, we will focus on three priority areas;

“We will intensify efforts to increase upstream gas production, to bridge the significant gas supply gaps which continue to hamper our strategic economic sectors (gas to power and gas-based industries, as well as gas for export). It is imperative that we work together to unlock more resources to provide gas for power, GBIs, LNG export, and domestic use, fostering economic growth, ensuring energy security and eradicating poverty, which is a cardinal objective of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda.

“We will prioritise the domestication and penetration of LPG and implement measures to significantly reduce the price of cooking gas for our people, ensuring it becomes more accessible, available, and affordable for our citizens.

“We are dedicated to the completion of major gas midstream infrastructure and projects, including the AKK Gas Pipeline Project, the OB3 Gas Pipeline Project, and the ANOH Project, as well as enabling flagship Projects like the Brass Methanol Project, to enhance the efficiency and capacity of our gas sector.

“As we are aware, Nigeria is positioned as one of the leading gas-rich countries in the world. We have, however, not unlocked the full potential of this valuable resource. This underperformance can be attributed to issues such as gas flaring, inadequate infrastructure, pricing concerns, policy and regulatory gaps, limited funding, environmental concerns, the growing urgency for a smooth energy transition as well as a lack of comprehensive gas development blueprint. It is my belief that by acknowledging these realities, we can proffer solutions.

“I am confident that the discussions and deliberations over the course of this engagement will not only lead to developing a comprehensive roadmap but will also strengthen the bonds between the public and private sectors. Together, we shall overcome challenges, unlock opportunities, and build a gas sector that stands the test of time and provides our Nation the platform to be the Regional industrial hub and powerhouse it is meant to be.”