Oil And Gas Development Plan by Dr. Ifedi Okwenna

Dr Ifedi A. Okwenna oil and Gas Development

Dr Ifedi A. Okwenna

Anambra State lies within the Anambra Basin which is one of the energy-rich
inland sedimentary basins in Nigeria next only to the Niger Delta basin. It is a nearly triangular shaped embayment covering about 3,000km2 with a total sedimentary thickness of about 9km. The basin habours largest deposit of coal and lignite in Nigeria. In addition to coal, the basin holds an estimated gas potential of 10 trillion cubic feet. Igbariam Gas field contains some of the successfully explored gas wells, alongside Ugwuoba gas field in Oji River, Enugu State. The wells successfully explored for Gas by Shell/BP in the basin include the Igbariam 1 and Ajire1.
The basin holds reasonable crude oil deposit as about one billion barrels of crude
oil in this basin is said to be part of Nigeria’s Strategic reserve.

In 2002, the Federal Government gave Orient Petroleum Resources Limited, the license to
explore for oil in the Anambra basin. The company partly owned by Anambra State government, is licenced to explore oil in its two oil fields in Aguleri OPL915 and OPL 916, giving to them on sole risk basis by the Federal government. The company currently has oil production capacity of 3,000 barrels per day which is expected to serve as feedstock. So far, the oil production is still from marginal fields through
the barges as opposed to pipelines and has therefore not attracted oil conglomerates.

With the maximum support of the Peter Obi – led Government, Orient Petroleum Resources Limited in 2012, laid the foundation for a 55,000 barrels capacity/day refinery project and it was at this foundation laying ceremony that Anambra State was formally declared an oil producing state by the President Goodluck Jonathan-led Federal Government. This was indeed one of the greatest achievements of the Peter Obi Government in Anambra State. However, since he left, no serious concrete effort has been made by Anambra State to tap into this Federal Government pronouncement.

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In addition to being an oil producing, the geographical location of Anambra state
next to two major oil producing states of Delta and Rivers means that apart from developing the petroleum resources in our state, we need to leverage on the endowments of our neighboring states to advance investment in oil and gas.

As crude oil and refined fuel is gradually dropping in value and importance, it is
imperative that we look at all the alternatives at our disposal as a State.

As a Government, we shall explore many options to see how we can tap into
oil and gas economy and subsequent leverage on Federal Government declaration of Anambra state as oil producing for our growth and development. The options available to us which we are to pursue as Government are:

  1. Engagement of Orient Petroleum Group, board and Management on how to reengineer and reposition the company. We will be interested in ensuring that the refinery and
    petrochemical component of the company’s operation are stimulated. We will also
    see how the company will put more emphasis on gas and oil production and
    harness these to gain more investor confidence which will synergize the
    completion of the refinery.
  2. With volume of gas resources within the Anambra basin, we will source investors to invest in Mini LNG facility which can serve entire Anambra state as the cheapest means to ensure a stable gas supply network. Mini LNG has advantage of low investment cost as the
    security risk is lower and the plant requires minimal infrastructure thereby reducing substantially the design complexity and time attributable to gas
    pipeline development.
  3. We shall create enabling environment for more investors to venture into the establishment of gas plants in Anambra State. Gas gathering in Orient upstream and down stream operations shall commence from early part of her operations to
    gathered gas into a gas plant for onward sales and distribution. We shall facilitate the licensing of investors in this area.
  4. LDC (Local Gas Distribution Companies).
    We shall encourage investments in the distribution of gas using pipelines especially in closed environments like estates, serviced apartments, layouts. This
    is because of its advantages of less energy, traffic and minimum pollution due to
    spillage. Apart from our expected investment in Mini LNG in Anambra State, we
    may tap into Aba – Enugu -Gboko Pipeline when it becomes operational, for gas supply.
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We shall also support investment in other gas distribution chains including gas refill stations, vehicle distribution etc. to ensure gas availability at affordable cost in Anambra State. This we help us reduce deforestation and promote energy conservation.

  1. Investment in Petrochemical Products.

Petrochemical products are everywhere and are integral to modern societies.
Their demands are high and will continue to increase. These are plastics,
fertilizers, packaging, clothing, digital devices, medical equipment, detergents, tires, solar panels, wind turbine blades, batteries, thermal insulations for building
an electric vehicle part. The importance of petrochemicals is continuing to grow
and it is indeed where our economy heavily depends on. Demand for plastics
alone has outpaced that of all other bulk materials (like steel, aluminum and
cement) and has nearly doubled since 2000. It will continue to grow,

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My Government will be tireless in its pursuit of reasonable investments in most of these areas mentioned above as they are the platform for climbing to our envisaged economic prosperity.

  1. Oil services and Component Parts Corridor.
    The Onitsha -Atani – Ogwu Ikpele road in Ogbaru Local Government area of
    Anambra State is a very important pathway to economic prosperity for Anambra State.The road leads to the boundary point between Anambra and Rivers State and across the River Niger to the oil rich Delta State. We shall provide synergy for Ndi Anambra to begin to diversify our business into oil services and components parts and petrochemical products.

My government shall as a matter of priority promote the dualization of the Onitsha – Ogwu-Ikpele
road and in consultation with Federal and Rivers State Government, build a bridge to connect Anambra State to Rivers State. Subsequently Industrial plots shall be mapped out for producing Petrochemical products, production and sales of Oil services equipment and component parts Ogbaru Free Trade Zone, which my government shal linitiate. With increase in activities along the
River Niger through ferry services, and proposed Inland water port in Onitsha and dry port between Atani and Ozubulu, these planned development projects will
eventually open up the Ogbaru axis to International businesses and increase their contribution to economic development and prosperity in Anambra State.

Join us, let’s go to work.

It’s possible.



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