Prominent oil multinationals, Shell and Chevron, have both revealed that they are unaware of plans by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) to extend the $1 billion the 678-kilometre West African Gas Pipeline to French-speaking nation Ivory Coast.
The pipeline is operated by the West African Gas Pipeline Company Limited (WAGPCo) which is run by Chevron. N-Gas, which is a separate company, also jointly-owned by Shell, Chevron, and the NNPC currently buys gas from oil companies in Nigeria and transport it to its customers in Benin, Togo and Ghana, through the pipeline.
When a delegation, led by the Deputy Director, Production, Ministry of Petroleum of Cote d’Ivoire, Mr. Patrick Marshal, visited the NNPC chief, Dr. Maikanti Baru, last week in Abuja, it was informed that there were plans to extend the pipeline to the West African nation.
But Chevron and Shell have both come out to say that they have no knowledge of such plans.
An official of Shell, who opted to remain anonymous, told ThisDay that the economic analysis of such an extension makes it unattractive to the partners. The official noted that the “project economics would not justify such investment in the face of the prevailing gas supply challenges in Nigeria.”
Chevron has also echoed similar concerns, noting that the pipeline is currently not working at optimal levels and as such considering an expansion at this point may prove too expensive and not commercially viable in the short-term.