By Palma Ileye
Minister of Steel Development, Prince Shuaibu Abubakar Audu has mulled the idea of exploring the utilization of the Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited, ASCL, for the proposed Federal Government Compressed Natural Gas, CNG project.
This initiative according to a press release issued by the Ministry aims to store and produce CNG, supporting President’s GAS INITIATIVE AGENDA and mitigating the impacts of subsidy removal.
This development was made known to newsmen during the maiden tour of the Minister to the Ajaokuta Steel Company as part of Government’s plan to resuscitate the ailing Steel sector in Nigeria.
“Ajaokuta Steel Company’s engineering workshop presents a unique opportunity for the storage of Compressed Natural Gas in specialized CNG tanks. This innovative use of ASCL’s infrastructure promises to bolster the country’s energy sector and reduce dependency on traditional fossil fuels,” he said.
“Furthermore, ASCL’s machine workshop stands poised to play a crucial role in this endeavor by producing essential accessories for gas cylinders used in CNG-powered buses. This local production of components aligns perfectly with President’s GAS INITIATIVE AGENDA, fostering self-sufficiency and contributing to the Nigerian economy.
“The machine shop, is well-prepared for the manufacture of various tools, implements, carriages, and spare parts. This expanded production capacity could lead to the creation of jobs and contribute to the growth of industries such as wheelbarrows, tricycle trucks (Keke Napep), and more,” the statement noted.
It stated that the Minister’s forward-thinking approach to leverage the assets of Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited for the CNG project underscores the government’s commitment to sustainable energy solutions and economic development.
It further stated that, “as this initiative progresses, it holds the potential to transform Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited into a key player in Nigeria’s transition towards cleaner and more efficient energy sources.”