• Wednesday, July 17, 2024
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Nigerian govt races to host $5 billion Africa energy bank

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The Nigerian government has continued on the race to host the $5 billion Africa energy bank, which it said aligns with the country’s strategic position as a leading energy producer in Africa.

This is as it hosts the heads of mission of the Africa Petroleum Producers Organisation (APPO) member states in Abuja for a dinner.

Read also: Nigeria eyes $5bn African Energy Bank to grow FDI

Speaking during the dinner on Tuesday, President Bola Tinubu said, “Tonight, we stand on the precipice of a transformative opportunity, one that holds immense promise not only for Nigeria but for the entire African continent.”

Representing the President, Heineken Lokpobiri, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), explained that establishing the AEB represents a bold and strategic move towards ensuring energy security, fostering economic growth, and promoting sustainable development across Africa.

He noted that the bank’s share capital is expected to be $5 billion to be subscribed over three years with an initial capital of $ 1.5 billion reserved for APPO member countries.

According to him, the Afrexim Bank has been supporting APPO to establish the bank and has approved an investment of $1.75 billion for the bank. He added that Nigeria offers a strategic geographical location, robust infrastructure, and a dynamic energy sector.

Read also: Expert advocates establishment of energy bank, tax cut

“Nigeria’s bid to host the headquarters of this pivotal institution is a testament to our unwavering commitment to these goals. Over the past months, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources has worked tirelessly to prepare for this moment.

“We have achieved significant milestones, including a comprehensive assessment by the APPO Afrexim-Bank Inspection Team. Their positive evaluation underscores Nigeria’s readiness and capability to host the AEB.

“However, the journey doesn’t end here. To secure the hosting rights, we need the collective support of all APPO member countries. Our competitors have intensified their efforts by appointing special envoys to lobby for their bids. In response, we are appealing to each of you to recognize the advantages of situating the AEB headquarters in Nigeria,” he said.

Lokpobiri appealed to the ambassadors to support Nigeria in its bid to host the headquarters of the African Energy Bank.

“Please deliver to them. The President, the commander in chief of the army forces of Nigeria, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is committed to having the headquarters of APPO in Abuja. Please give us this indulgence of hosting this one important Africa energy bank.”

In his remarks, Nicholas Ella, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources noted that Nigeria’s strategic location at the crossroads of West Africa renders Abuja an unrivalled nexus of connectivity and accessibility.

He stressed that with its extensive network of transportation infrastructure and logistical capabilities, Abuja offers a strategic gateway to the entire African continent, providing the Africa Energy Bank with unparalleled access to key energy markets, stakeholders, and decision-makers across Africa.

For him, by selecting Abuja as its host city, the Africa Energy Bank can serve as a linchpin of connectivity, fostering collaboration and catalysing progress on a continental scale.

He said, “Nigeria’s rich endowment of oil, gas, and renewable energy resources presents an unparalleled opportunity for the AEB to harness the continent’s vast energy potential and drive sustainable development.

“With proven reserves of over 37 billion barrels of oil and 5 trillion cubic meters of natural gas, Nigeria ranks among the top energy producers in Africa.”

Read also: Advancing Nigeria’s Energy Future: The Commissioning of Tetracore Energy’s Compressed Natural Gas Facility and Groundbreaking of her Liquefied Natural Gas Facility

Also speaking at the event, Adamu Lamuwa, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who was represented by Nigeria’s Ambassador to Cuba, Ben Okoye, noted that the move holds the power to shape the trajectory of energy cooperation and development across Africa for generations to come.

“Tonight, as representatives of our respective nations and esteemed members of the African Petroleum Producers Organization (APPO), we convene to deliberate on a matter of extraordinary significance; the establishment of the Africa Energy Bank and the pivotal decision of selecting its host country.

“The gravity of this decision cannot be overstated, for it holds the power to shape the trajectory of energy cooperation and development across Africa for generations to come. Allow me to express my deepest gratitude for your unwavering dedication to this noble cause and your steadfast commitment to fostering collaboration and partnership among African nations.

“It is through gatherings such as this that we have the opportunity to harness the collective wisdom, experience, and expertise of our diverse nations to confront the formidable energy challenges facing our continent head-on.

“As we embark on this transformative journey together, guided by the principles of cooperation, inclusivity, and sustainability, I am filled with unwavering confidence in our collective ability to realise a future of prosperity and progress for all Africans,” he said.