Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas), Rt. Hon. Ekperikpe Ekpo, has promised to work towards attracting investments into the gas sector in order to unlock its full potential for national development. He said this during the inaugural meeting with staff of the ministry jointly held with the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources (Oil), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, in Abuja. Ekpo said he has the vision to increase gas supplies to thermal plants so as to improve electricity generation, transmission and distribution to consumers in the country. According to him, of the 20 top gas producing nations in the world, utilisation was least in Nigeria, hence the need for increased investments in the industry.
He also assured of greater investments in Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) infrastructure to deepen penetration among Nigerians. He said the gas sector held great prospects for the resuscitation of the economy and tasked workers on the need for commitment and dedication to meeting the expectations of Nigerians from the gas industry. “Today we talk about insecurity, unemployment and even food security, but I believe that this ministry is critical to the growth of our economy. We need to grow gas supplies to our power plants so that there is improved electricity generation and supply to assist in job creation to our youths,” he said. Ekpo assured existing and prospective investors of a conducive environment to do business in the gas industry.
Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr Gabriel Aduda, implored the minister to intervene in the disparity in remuneration between staff of the ministry and industry workers. He said the ministry was endowed with quality and experienced staff to match or exceed that of operators in the industry asking that the minister assist workers in enjoying petroleum service allowances.