Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline: a “highly” strategic project benefiting 400 million people, says Ms Benkhadra

Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline: a “highly” strategic project benefiting 400 million people, says Ms Benkhadra

The Director General of the National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines (ONHYM), Amina Benkhadra, stressed Thursday in Rabat that the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline is a “highly” strategic project that will benefit some 400 million people in the region.

Ms. Benkhadra, who was speaking at the signing ceremony of a memorandum of understanding relating to the Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline, between the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Nigeria and Morocco, indicated that this project will allow the transport of more than 5,000 billion cubic meters of proven reserves of natural gas, which will boost electricity production and solve the problems of accessibility to energy in most of the countries crossed.

It is also expected to benefit nearly 400 million people living in the region and improve the economic and social well-being of its people, she noted.

“Today’s signing of the MoU is an extremely important step in the development of this strategic project which emanates from the vision of the two Heads of State HM King Mohammed VI and Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, who have this vision of development of our continent and in particular the West African zone since 16 countries are concerned, including 13 on the Atlantic coast and 3 landlocked countries”, noted Ms. Benkhadra.

She, in this sense, assured that the engineering studies are progressing “very well”, thanking “ECOWAS since it has participated with us from the beginning and it is contributing today with this signature to show the commitment of approach of the Community and all of its 14 member countries to accompany this project for the finalization of the following stages and for the interaction with the various States as well as for the support in order to reach the final investment decision” .

The Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline is a strategic project which will make it possible to “contribute to the acceleration of the development of our sub-region, to bring electricity under better conditions, to ensure regional integration of our economies and to contribute to the industrial and mining development, she said.

It will also accelerate the development of all sectors through clean and sustainable energy, available not only in Nigeria, which has the largest resources on the continent, but also in Senegal and Mauritania, which have agreed to contribute to the supply of the gas pipeline which will also export to Europe, added the DG of ONHYM.

Recalling the current energy crisis in the world, Ms Benkhadra noted that gas is important for diversifying European energy sources.

And to conclude that “we will work hand in hand with Nigeria and the National Nigerian Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) and ECOWAS and its 14 countries, in addition to Mauritania, for the success of this project in order to give the Africa the even greater place it should have on the international scale”.

The memorandum of understanding was initialed by Sediko Douka, ECOWAS Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy and Digitalization, Mallam Mele Kolo Kyari, Chief Executive Officer of NNPC, who represents Nigeria, and Ms. Benkhadra, representative of Morocco.

The ceremony took place in the presence of the Minister of Economy and Finance, Nadia Fettah, the Minister of Investment, Convergence and the Evaluation of Public Policies, Mohcine Jazouli, and the Director General of the Office of Electricity and Drinking Water Abderrahim El Hafidi.

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