Germany has declared its intention to assist Nigeria in solving its persistent energy crisis through loan financing under the partnership deal between the two countries.
This plan was disclosed at the 5th Nigeria-German Energy Partnership conference, held in Abuja by the Nigerian Energy Council.
Under the partnership agreement, Nigeria will supply gas to the Germans, while it (Germany) invests in the country’s energy sector as well as provide technical support for development of local capacity for the industry.
The 35-person German delegation from government and industry at the conference, expressed its happiness at the success already achieved, particularly n the area of capacity building scheme its government financed last year to the tune of N 82 million.
The delegation which was led by the State Secretary of the German Federal Foreign Office, Dr. Peter Ammon said, “In the wake of the progress achieved by the Partnership, the German government is targeting as a next step loan financing to support rehabilitation of the Kainji hydropower plant and is considering further financial and technical assistance for the Nigerian power sector.
The conference which was formally opened by the Minister of State for Power Nuhu Wya, on behalf of Vice-President Namadi Sambo, was chaired by a Nigerian-German tandem in line with the partnership’s policy of discussions among equals.
The conference focused on the implementation of a portfolio of projects, and realization of five flagship projects. The projects include, gas gathering primarily for domestic use under the terms of the gas master plan; finalization of the extension of the Geregu power plant by 434 MW; deployment of small heavy-fuel oil power stations; erection of a coal-fired power plant; rehabilitation/extension of large-scale and construction of small hydropower plants.
The delegates said by helping Nigeria rehabilitate its power infrastructure, Germany hopes in exchange to have access to its natural gas, diversify its energy base and ensure energy situation for Germany.
According to the speech at the conference, “It is a win-win situation. We have many German companies coming into Nigeria with state of the art technology and we have also developed a comprehensive approach to rehabilitate the Nigerian power sector, which is the added incentive we are bringing.
“It is a complete package we are offering, and I am confident that our Nigerian partners would embrace the spirit of the partnership and do their part in bringing about the full benefits for both countries. I am sure that Nigeria would benefit from this partnership.”
To fast-track the implementation of the NGEP projects, an eight-person working group has been constituted.
Despite being Africa’s largest petroleum producer, decades of challenges in the energy sector have left the nation with no clear way of refining crude oil into fuel used to generate electricity. Hence, the country has had to rely on other countries to assist it in developing its energy sector.