An indigenous operator in the Uquoo marginal oil fields in Esit Eket, Akwa Ibom, Frontier Oil Limited, said on Tuesday that its new gas processing plant would start production by January 2013.
Thomas Dada, Managing Director of the oil firm, disclosed this in an interview in Eket, Akwa Ibom, that the `startup' schedule of the plant was on course.
Dada said the plant was already at pre-commissioning stages while.
According to him, the operation of the gas plant will change the status of the gas plant host communities, Eket and Esit Eket from a non hydrocarbon producing to a producing community.
``The gas plant will definitely transform the economic landscape of our host communities and indeed Akwa Ibom because it will ensure availability of gas for power generation.
``Our production will put the communities on the register as gas bearing communities which is recognised in the new Petroleum Industry Bill before the National Assembly.
``The switching-on of this plant in January will significantly improve power generation by 1000 MW or 25 per cent and we are at the forefront of domestic utilisation of gas rather than export,” he said
He said that the company was taking deliberate steps to ensure that the country added value to raw materials to earn more revenue and diversify the economy.
“What we are doing is to gathers the non associated gas in our oil fields, process and transports them to Ibom power plant in Ikot Abasi, Akwa Ibom and Calabar Power plant where it will be used for power generation.
``Availability of power is a catalyst for industrial and economic progress; also we are encouraging our gas buyers to locate their operations to the source and add local value to it and this concept will bring more benefit and opportunities to the communities,” Dada said.
He appealed to the Federal Government to review the low pricing gas regime to make investments in the sector viable to ensure reasonable returns on investment.