Hydrocarbons: West Africans, do not count on the pipeline!
Supposed to feed Benin, Togo and Ghana, the West African gas pipeline does not hold its promises.Dysfunctions that start to have a real impact on the economies of the countries concerned.
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Hydrocarbons: local juniors in the relay
More than four years after the launch of the activities of the West African Africa (GAO) gas pipeline which supplies Benin, Togo and Ghana from the gas fields in Nigeria, the balance sheet is far from being satisfactory.
The N-GAS Nigerian organization, owned by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) and Chevron Nigeria, does not manage to provide the pipeline with the daily delivery of 200 million cubic feet (MPC), i.e. 5.7 million cubic meters, natural gas provided by the contract signed in 2003 with the Nigerian, Beninese, Togolese, and Ghanaian governments and with the secretariat of the Economic Community of West Africa States(ECOWAS).
It is only thanks to the purchase of crude oil that Ghana manages to run its power plants ...
And this situation is likely to last, a large part of the content of the gas pipeline used to meet the more important needs of the Lagos region, before even crossing the border.
Result: in Benin, Togo and Ghana, the power plants lack gas and the cuts multiply even in the capitals.
The Ghanaian public company, Volta River Authority (real), which imports natural gas via GAO, receives for example only between 50 and 80 MPC per day when it awaits 120.In mid-September, the situation has even worsened with the NNPC workers' strike movement, which caused the service interruption for several days, forcing Accra to consider stopping its thermal power plants.
Two years ago, sabotage of the Togolese territory was caused an interruption of the supply of gas for eight long months."The impact of gas pipeline dysfunctions is important on our economy.Regular load shedding scratch our industries, ”explains a Ghanaian government source.
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In July, Ghana had to turn to Côte d'Ivoire to have the electricity production it needed.However, the future entry into production of the jubilee field off the coast of Ghana should allow it to have the 300 MPC necessary for the country in the country.
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In the meantime, it is thanks to the purchase of crude oil that ACCRA manages to run its power plants.An extremely expensive solution, which costs the state $ 55 million (43 million euros) every three weeks.Calculated on the basis of a barrel at 35 dollars, the penalty of $ 20 million inflicted on N-GAS for non-compliance with its commitments will only cover a small part of the additional cost supported by Ghana.
Despite these recurring difficulties, ECOWAS States continue to bet on the GAO.The West African Gas Pipeline Company, the management company of the gas pipeline which brings together NNPC, Shell, Chevron, Takoradi Power Company, Bengaz, Vra and Sotogaz Togo, has started negotiations with independent gas producers in Nigeria and Benin to increase thefuel volumes transported.Building on its gas potential, Côte d'Ivoire also plans to connect to the pipeline to offer its future resources.
Several projects are envisaged.The infrastructure could initially be extended to Assinie (south-east of the country) for an investment estimated at $ 645 million.Then a second project, already awarded to the Italian Saipem, will consist in running a pipeline over a hundred additional kilometers to Abidjan.
The objective is to interconnect the pipeline with two deposits, CI 01 and CI 202, operated respectively by the American Vanco and Canadian Natural Resources.The project, provided that Côte d'Ivoire see its current production of increased gas, could attract funding from Ghana, which has received a loan of $ 3 billion from China intended to develop its gas sector.
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