Uche Usim, Abuja
Five Governors of the South-East, Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva, Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and other stakeholders in the gas sector will converge on Owerri on October 14 for the Gas Utilization Forum (GUF) powered by the Gas Aggregation Company of Nigeria Limited (GACN) – the National Strategic Gas Aggregator.
The event, according to GACN, serves as a fulcrum to boost economic growth of the South-East and ultimately Nigeria by facilitating optimal use of natural gas to drive industrialization.
The Chairman of GACN, Mr Mansur Sambo (who also doubles as the Managing Director of Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), noted that the forum would enable critical Gas to Power stakeholders proffer practical end-to-end energy solutions to industries in the South East and unlock additional Investments for gas development, gas pipelines and others, which is consistent the economic development agenda of the Federal Government and host States.
While the Forum will be hosted by the Governor of Imo State, Mr Hope Uzodinma, the four other Governors of Anambra, Mr Willie Obiano; his Ebonyi counterpart, Mr David Umahi; Enugu Governor, Mr Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and that of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu will be co-hosts.
Also commenting on the planned forum, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of GACN, Mr. Olalekan Ogunleye, stated that the firm was very pleased with the good opportunity to collaborate with the South-East business communities and stakeholders to further boost economic development in Nigeria. He noted that the South-East brims with commercial hubs and industrial clusters, expressing hopes that the over 500 industries scheduled to attend the event will be provided practical and efficient energy solutions that would significantly reduce their operating cost, thereby freeing up more resources for expansion and profit.
More so, the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva is scheduled to attend personally given the obvious economic benefits of the event and its linkages with his prioritization of gas development for economic growth nationwide, further underpinned by the declaration of year 2020 as the Year of Gas.
The organisers further stated that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was fully supportive of the event, adding that the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mr Mele Kyari will lead stakeholders in the petroleum sector to the Forum.
Furthermore, key Gas to Energy participants are enthused by this upcoming value-yielding event.
Speakers confirmed to make presentations at this historic event include; the Chief Operating Officer (COO) Gas and Power at the NNPC, Mr Yusuf Usman, the President of Nigerian Gas Association, Mrs. Audrey Joe- Ezigbo, the Managing Director of Shell Nigeria Gas, Mr. Ed Ubong, MD of Nigerian Gas Marketing Company, Mr Faruk Usman, MD of ND Western, Mr Eberechukwu Oji, the Managing Director and CEO of Century Power Generation, Chukwueloka Umeh and Group General Manager, Crude Oil Marketing Department (COMD) of the NNPC, Sir Billy Okoye, amongst others.
The GACN held a Workshop on the 16th of September 2020, to update the Master Gas Sale Agreements to reflect current market realities and ensure equitable risk allocation between parties to such agreements.
GACN’s decision to host these events are in recognition of the increasingly dynamic nature of the Nigerian domestic gas market and a demonstration of its commitment to ensure balanced growth in the domestic gas market.
The September 16 Forum further deepened the collaborative platform set up by the GACN for stakeholders in Nigeria’s domestic gas industry to have in-depth discussions and update the existing Gas Master Agreements as well as proffer solutions to identified challenges.