The President of the Republic of Niger, H.E. Mohamed Bazoum, attended an investment promotion session hosted by the African Energy Chamber (AEC) and EnerGeo Alliance, the global trade alliance for the energy geoscience industry, in Houston, Texas, with the aim of strengthening ties of cooperation between Niger and American-based businesses.
The event, which took place on September 23 as part of a larger summit, featured African heads of state, ministers, and Houston-based executives who all came together to talk about the future of energy in Africa and the opportunities, developments, and challenges that lie ahead.
“The goal of this event, in line with the priorities consistently voiced by President Bazoum to invite and engage with credible investors who can partner with the government and our private sector to exploit the resources of Niger for the benefit of both the investors as well as for the people of Niger” stated Mahamane Sani Mahamadou, Niger Republic’s Minister of Petroleum who was also present at the event. “Niger currently has over 35 exploration blocks on offer with great potential and we invite interested parties to put in bids for them” he continued.
The government of Niger is committed to providing affordable, long-term energy to all of its citizens. The West African nation of Niger has developed a plan for rural electrification in order to meet its stated goal of universal electricity access by 2035. This plan includes a nationwide feasibility study for the development of a market for mini grids. A huge step toward success will be taken once its vast gas reserves are developed.
Additionally, in March of 2022, the government of the Republic of Niger inked a contract with Savannah Energy, a private energy firm, to build and operate the country’s first wind farm. The Parc Eolien de la Tarka wind farm will have an installed generation capacity of 250 MW, making it one of the largest wind farms on the continent.
Since taking office, President Bazoum has shifted the country’s attention to its burgeoning oil sector, investing heavily in infrastructure projects like the construction of a 2,000-kilometer, US$4.5 billion crude oil pipeline connecting the highly prospective Agadem Rift Basin in Niger with the Beninese Coast. When completed in 2023, the pipeline will have a capacity of 90,000 barrels per day, which is expected to increase domestic production by a factor of five, establishing the country as a major regional oil producer and global competitor.
By connecting Niger’s rich natural resources with global markets, the pipeline will boost exports and stimulate domestic production. Also, it will show that the Sahel can be a major oil and gas frontier. Niger is leading frontier exploration and associated production thanks to the presence of two major oil producers: China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), the current main operator of the Niger-Benin pipeline, and Savannah Energy.
These manufacturers have been essential to developing Niger’s oil industry, driving exploration drilling that has resulted in major discoveries. Niger’s oil sector has been a major engine of job creation, energy access, and economic growth thanks to Minister Mahamadou’s leadership and the sector’s emphasis on local content.
“We continue to see great progress in Niger, when it comes to the investment climate in their oil and gas sector, especially the fiscal terms that investors are being offered, as well as the sensible local content regulations in place that make it easy for investors to invest their capital and reap great benefits whilst still contributing immensely to the development of the country.” said NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman of the African Energy Chamber. “this will no doubt unlock additional billions of dollars of investments into Niger’s oil and gas sector and ultimately lead to energy security in the country and the region” Ayuk continued.