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NLNG: The Making Of A Gas Giant

…Awarded EPC contract for Train 7

…Train 7 to add to capacity from 22 to 30million tons

…Asset base now $11billion and has delivered more than $110million revenue with half a million dollars dividends to shareholders

…Company fully managed by Nigerians including indigenous workforce

…Encourages the use of LPG in local communities

The Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) is indeed one of the successful gas companies in sub-Sahara Africa and across the globe. In December 2019 NLNG Joint Ventures took an FID to expand its energy facilities by 100 million tons.

Despite Covid-19 and its attendant issues which was turbulent in the last four months, the company successfully awarded an EPC contract to secure funds for its Train 7 project.

The Managing Director (MD) of NLNG, Tony Attah, was a guest at a webinar organised by CWC which was moderated by Patricia Roberts in London.

In perspective, Attah disclosed that NLNG is a private company owned by four virile shareholders supported by Nigerian government with 49% equity represented by Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), Shell has 25.6%, Total with 15% and Eni 10.4%

Two of the NLNG shareholders are big LNG companies in the world, Eni and Total, they underpin the strength of the gas company.

The vision of the gas company is to be a global LNG company in order to build a better Nigeria. It has two subsidiaries, Bonny Gas Transport and NSLM which is the shipping arm.

Also, in 2019 it celebrated 20 years of successful operations and 30 years of existence. The company was incorporated since 1989. It was a period between 1989 and 2019 which made 30 years where its founding fathers dreamt of the company.

Attah revealed that the company since incorporation has succeeded in building its first Train, overall, it has 6 Trains, now working on the next.

Progressively, NLNG is laying foundation for 2050 where the company becomes 50 years of existence as a commercial gas venture.

The NLNG MD stated thus, “Today, we have delivered more than 4800 cargoes to the world bringing energy, we have 23 dedicated ships with 6 Trains delivering 22 tons per annuum and Train 7 really going to add to that capacity by 35% essentially going from 22 million tons to 30 million tons.”

As a well-founded gas company, it has over $11 billion asset base and balance sheet. The company has delivered slightly more than $110 million in revenue and half a million dollars in dividends to its shareholders. It is creating values for its stakeholders starting with shareholders, staff, society and its customers.

As part of its commitment to gas, NLNG has reduced massively gas flaring in Nigeria to more than 65% with less than 20% in-country. Attah added, “as far as the upstream producers can gather gas, we are available as Nigerian LNG to receive it thereby not just eliminating gas flaring but also offering monetization opportunity for the government.”

The NLNG MD stated, “to date we buy gas, we don’t have our own gas plants, we don’t produce gas, we buy gas so when people talk about NLNG flaring, it is interesting because you cannot buy gas to go and flare it. We buy gas and add value to it.”

Through gas purchase alone, NLNG made more than 13billion to the federal government of Nigeria.

Attah revealed surprisingly that NLNG is 100% managed by Nigerians. Thus, “in our leadership, we are all Nigerians that is a testament of what is possible, we really focus on what we want to achieve overall, we have contributed about N1billion in taxes since we became tax payers.”

The company partners with federal, local and state governments to tackle Covid-19 pandemic. Amazingly, NLNG has contributed $4million in terms of support to communities to federal and state governments.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

NLNG is a socially responsible company and has immensely supported the Nigerian society. The company has four-point agenda in its CSR activities where it focuses on health, education, infrastructural development most importantly field development which involves youths and younger generation. In his words, Attah said, “we believe that the future is about developing the youth today to be able to take charge tomorrow.”

In infrastructural development, NLNG is supporting the construction of Bonny-Bodo road which is the first opportunity to connect Bonny Island where the company’s terminal is situated in Port Harcourt, capital of Rivers State. Attah said, “you can only go by river or you fly in if you have the means. But with our support, we are partnering with the federal government to build this road to connect Bonny to Port Harcourt. This is a $700million project and we are contributing 50% of that as part of our support to society project, it is about 40% completion.”

The biggest success of NLNG CSR is health support to its host community. In the health insurance scheme in Bonny, with $40 someone could have full heath cover and in the course of setting the scheme NLNG has carried out a feasibility study and the result was that the prevalence ailment in Bonny Island was largely about 75% malaria.

With this discovery, the gas company focuses on malaria, at present, it has started a project which is to eradicate malaria from Bonny Island.

“We know it is possible, it is not going to be easy but we know it’s being done elsewhere and that journey has started and it’s going to be positive, Attah enthused.”

LNG Support to Communities

The predominant source of energy is typically biomass kerosene and firewood in rural communities in the Niger Delta region especially for domestic use. This has led to environmental degradation. NLNG is changing the narratives by bringing in energy in-country and tackle both environmental and health issues.

The company has on its data more than one million people who die from smoke mostly women and children trying to cook using derivatives and alternative sources of energy. Unfortunately, in Nigeria, the data is about 100,000 women and children who die on annual basis using unconventional sources of energy for domestic use. This is why the company is committed to provide Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) into Nigerian communities.

The Advent of Train 7

Attah expressed optimism that Train 7 will bring fortune to Nigeria, its host communities and to the company. “It took a while but finally it has arrived and we are delighted that we are able to take the Train 7 FID back in December most importantly being able to put pen on paper to sign the actual EPC contract which tease it up for actual delivery in 13th of May.”