In a bid to fast-track the process of achieving the Final Investment Decision (FID) on the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline, the Federal Government has intensified discussions with the Kingdom of Morocco.
The discussion held on Wednesday, January 24, 2024, on the sidelines of a meeting between the Ekperikpe Ekpo, Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas), and Leila Benali, the Moroccan minister of energy Transition and Sustainable Development.
According to a statement signed by Olufemi Soneye, chief corporate communications officer of the state-owned oil company, the talks focused on how to drive the partnership between the two countries to accelerate the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline Project in line with the series of Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) signed between the two countries in Abuja in 2022.
“Both parties emphasised the strategic importance of the project to the two countries and the entire African continent and the need to drive it to completion expeditiously in line to stem energy poverty on the African Continent,” the statement read.
The Cooperation Agreement for the 48” x 5,300Km pipeline from Nigeria to Dhakia (Morocco) and 1,700km from Dhakia to Northern Morocco was signed in 2017 with a capacity of 30 billion cubic meter (bcm) per year (equivalent of 3.0 billion standard cubic feet of gas per day).
According to reports, the pipeline would traverse the Republic of Benin, Togo, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Senegal, Mauritania, and terminate in Morocco with a spur to Spain.
“Due to the international nature of the project, the ECOWAS Commission is saddled with the responsibility to, among other things, facilitate inter-governmental treaty and host government agreements, establishment of Pipeline Higher Authority, and alignment with AU, UN and other relevant international bodies.
“The project, among other things, will help drive the monetisation of Nigeria’s gas resources, maintain NNPC Ltd.’s energy leadership in Africa, and promote economic and regional cooperation among African Countries,” the statement read.
The meeting was anchored by Olalekan Ogunleye, the NNPC Ltd.’s Executive Vice President, Gas, Power & New Energy, and Mme Amina Benkhadra, the Director General of the Morocco National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines (ONHYM).