FG to begin conversion of vehicles to run on gas - SALIENT TIMES ONLINE

FG to begin conversion of vehicles to run on gas

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By Olubiyi Obasa

Federal government through the Nigeria Gas Expansion Programme (NGEP) may soon start the conversion of vehicles to run on gas.

This is even as the Ministry of Petroleum Resources secured a N250billion facility as part of a stimulus package for the sector.

This move is aimed at creating alternative energy for motorists and deepening the use of autogas. It will also serve as a means of employment to Nigerians.

This was disclosed in a television program, monitored by our correspondent.

The theme of the discourse was: ‘Natural Gas as Cheap Alternative Fuel for Transportation & Other Prime Movers – Catalyst for Nigeria’s Economic Renaissance’.

The Technical Adviser on Gas Business and Policy Implementation to the Honorable Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mr Justice Derefaka, stated that the use of gas will generate employment because there’s no in-country capacity to convert vehicles.

“We will make sure we convert vehicles across the six geopolitical zones of the country. We need to train personnel to be competent to do that conversion because we need to have several conversion centres.

“That’s why the Honorable Minister approached the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and secured a N250billion facility as part of a stimulus package for the sector, particularly for the National Gas Expansion Programme (NGEP).

By so doing, somebody who doesn’t have a job will be trained and later be employed for conversion purposes.” On conversion kits, he said: “We have over one million kits sourced in-country.

We have discussions with investors that have them across the country and we have engagement with them on how they can spread this across the country because most of them have their catchment areas and footprints to make sure they have conversion kits in those areas.

Thus, over a million kits would be sufficient for the programme in Q4 2020. Other filling stations are upgrading because this is serious business for them.

“We need to harvest our abundant natural resources to ensure that this impacts positively on the lives of common Nigerians.

When we deregulate the downstream sector, we need to give Nigerians alternative fuel, which is gas. Gas is a cleaner fuel and it is the closest ally to renewables.

This helps to reduce pollution from using petrol or diesel.” He said further: “There are social-economic benefits that Nigerians need to know about and it equally reduces our CO2 emissions.

The Honorable Minister of State (Chief Timipre Sylva) has identified certain fundamental gas issues that need to be addressed, viz: gas pricing, infrastructural deficit and sanctity of contract.”

He explained that autogas is predominantly propane. It is gas in liquid form (liquefied petroleum gas). For the common man, it is the same cooking gas.

But for vehicles and other prime movers, it is called autogas.

“So, at filling station, you will see the price of petrol going for let’s say N161/litre, and you will also see the price of autogas going for like N90/standard cubic meter. Nobody will tell you to go for gas instead of petrol.

What we are doing now is to make sure we address the issue of making this product available at fuel stations across the country.”