The Royal Cabinet of Morocco recently revealed that King Mohammed VI and the President of the Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari have affirmed their commitment to the construction of the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline.
The Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline was conceived back in December 2016 through an agreement between the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Moroccan Office National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines (National Board of Hydrocarbons and Mines) (ONHYM).
The pipeline will connect Nigerian gas to every coastal country in the West Africa region i.e. Benin, Togo, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Senegal, and Mauritania, and end at Tangiers, Morocco, a distance of about 5,660 kilometers. Basically, it will be an extension of the existing West African Gas Pipeline, which already connects Nigeria with Benin, Togo, and Ghana. The gas pipeline will also be connected to the existing infrastructure in order to serve Spain through Cádiz.
Progress made so far
Reportedly, in August 2017 the NNPC and ONHYM had begun a feasibility study for the pipeline. The study was completed in January 2019, and in the same month, the two countries contracted with Penspen Engineering company to conduct the first phase of front-end engineering & design. By March last year, the front-end engineering & design had entered the second phase. The project is planned to be completed in stages over a 25 years period.
Expectations for the project
The Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline is expected to improve access to energy across the West Africa region. This will help address one of the region’s most significant barriers to development, which is the lack of affordable energy, and consequently facilitate the expansion of sectors ranging from industry to food processing and fertilizers, and improve the competitiveness of exports amongst the African countries. Additionally, the project will strengthen energy exports to Europe.