The domestic storage capacity of Nigeria’s Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) now stands at 69,698 metric tonnes (mt), after the completion of construction works at a new terminal of Techno Oil Limited, Minister of State for Petroleum Timipre Sylva said on Wednesday.
Mr Sylva, represented by Musa Zaki, the deputy director of the Department of Petroleum Resources at the inauguration of the 8,400mt-capacity gas facility at Apapa, disclosed that the country had designated 2020 as the outset of the “Decade of Gas” when the product was hoped to enlarge and power the Nigerian economy.
“Central to such national aspiration is the deepening of LPG penetration, whereby both domestic and commercial food cooking is expected to be fuelled by LPG as a complete alternative to all existing cooking fuels, most especially firewood.”
The heftiest part of Nigeria’s annual LPG production of 4 million metric tonnes goes into exportation, causing the Nigeria LNG (NLNG) Limited to provide only around 40% of domestic demand while investors source for the shortfall via imports.
Local LPG need reached 840,000mt last December, 40% higher than that of the previous year, Nigeria Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association said.
Yet NLNG meets only 350,000mt of that demand, promising to ramp supply up to 450,000 by next year.
“With an LPG cylinder manufacturing plant of 5 million per annum and commissioning of this 8,400MT automated terminal, the company is no doubt set out to provide end-to-end solution in the domestic LPG industry,” Sylva added.
Nigeria has 12 LPG depots around the country, whose stock facilities make up the 69,698mt.
“We plead with government to provide funding to industrialists in building key facilities such as the one being commissioned,” said Nkechi Obi, the group managing director of Techno Oil.
“Government should consider reactivating its butanisation plants and also building new ones across the country to guarantee LPG availability nationwide,” she added.