Umar Ajiya, Nigeria’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPC), underlined on Tuesday that the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline project would unlock lucrative investment opportunities, according to The Whistler.
During his opening keynote address at the 3rd International Conference on Hydrocarbon Science and Technology (ICHST), Ajiya shed light on significant projects such as the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) and the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline, along with various financing opportunities.
“The landscape of the Nigerian Energy Industry is rich with opportunities, particularly in major gas projects such as the AKK and the Nigeria-Morocco Pipeline,” said the CFO of NNPC Limited.
The Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline is worth $25 billion and seeks to enhance the monetization of natural gas and also provide new alternative export routes to the European continent.
This project is also anticipated to contribute to accelerating energy access, enhancing living standards for the population, and fostering regional economic integration.
The pipeline will traverse a lengthy route, originating in Nigeria and spanning across elven countries, including Benin, Togo, Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Senegal, and Mauritania, before reaching its final destination in Morocco.
It will also connect three other countries, namely Mali, Burkina Faso, and Nigeria. It is expected to affect a population of 340 million people.
The pipeline’s passing countries will be able to generate enough electricity for domestic consumption, manufacturing, and agricultural production. It should also create jobs and improve people’s living conditions in those countries.
The pipeline, which will run for 7,000 kilometers along the West African coast, is expected to transport nearly 3 billion cubic feet of gas per day to Morocco and Europe.
The Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline project was announced in Abuja in 2016 by King Mohammed VI and former Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari.
In 2021, the Islamic Development Bank, along with the Ministry of Economy and Finance, and the National Office for Hydrocarbons and Mines (ONHYM) in Rabat signed a financing agreement for the Study of Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) for the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline Project.
According to the agreement, Morocco and Nigeria would split the cost of the study project, which was estimated to be USD 90.1 million (MAD 386 million). The Islamic Development Bank would match the Moroccan contribution up to USD 15.45 million as part of the Ijarah Service.
In 2023, four African countries signed memorandums of understanding with Morocco and Nigeria to participate in the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline project. Those countries were Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Guinea, and Benin.
These agreements were a continuation of the memorandums signed with ECOWAS, Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone, and Ghana in 2022.
Last July, RPS Group, a UK-based professional services company, was awarded a contract to support the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline Project, partnering with the Office National of Hydrocarbons and Mines (ONHYM) and NNPC.
As part of the contract, RPS Group’s global MetOcean team will conduct offshore meteorological and oceanographic measurements for one year along the proposed pipeline route. They will utilize their expertise and the newly established RPS MetOcean workshop facility in Newbury, near Reading, UK.
Nasser Bourita previously said that the Nigeria-Morocco project “is a model of regional integration that will change the face of Atlantic Africa.”