07 September 2012, Sweetcrude, Yenagoa, Bayelsa – Chairman of the Board of Brass Liquefied Natural Gas, Dr. Jackson Gaius-Obaseki yesterday said the project would take-off on or before the end of the first quarter of 2013.
Dr Gaius-Obaseki disclosed this when the Board and management team of BLNG visited Governor Seriake Dickson at Government House in Yenagoa.
According to him, the final investment decision (FID) will be taken soon and called on all stakeholders to collaborate effectively to achieve this target.
In his presentation, the Managing Director of BLNG, Mr. Lorenzo Di Lorenzo said contracts for the construction of Gas Trains Engineering and Procurement, Onshore and Offshore works including loading facilities have been awarded to Bechtel.
Mr. Lorenzo listed the shareholders of BLNG to include NNPC (49%), Eni (17%), Conoco Philips (17%) and Total (17%).
The Managing Director noted that the project when operational, will not only provide sustainable development for local communities in the Niger Delta, but also complement Federal Government’s gas flare-down policy and buy into global Kyoto Protocol Objectives.
According to him, BLNG has so far trained over 125 technicians at the Petroleum Training Institute, Effurun, Warri in Delta State as well as built a community information centre and a health facility at Twon-Brass as part of its corporate social responsibility.
While calling for support from all shareholders, Mr. Lorenzo suggested that a team to be led by the Chairman and GMD of BLNG will meet with the Minister of Petroleum Resources with the aim of resolving all outstanding upstream and downstream related issues.
Receiving the delegation, Governor Seriake Dickson reiterated the readiness of government to provide the enabling environment for the Brass Liquefied Natural Gas Project to achieve its set objectives.
Describing the project as a centre of gravity for the development of the state, the governor, who was represented by his Deputy, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah (Rtd) expressed confidence in the team and called for enduring partnership between all critical stakeholders in the project.
To demonstrate its commitment to the project, Governor Dickson noted that his administration is prioritizing the Nembe-Brass road and the development of a deep seaport in the state.
According to him, the design of the road will make provision for the construction of a railway on the long term to connect the state to commercial centres such as Onitsha.
Governor Dickson who identified lack of communication as the cause of hostilities between some oil majors and their host communities called on BLNG not to concentrate all of its activities especially fabrication facilities in Brass Island.
Commending the company for its training programmes, Hon. Dickson urged the BLNG to complement his administration’s efforts at giving specialized training to more youths in areas such as underwater welding with a view to making them relevant for the project.
The governor acknowledged BLNG’s recognition of the relevance of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, pointing out that the activities of the board could lead to a multiplier effect that would actually accommodate grievances that might be expressed by some of the host communities.