The Minister of Energy, Hon. Boakye Agyarko on May 12, 2017 addressed the Committee of Ministers (COM) of the West African Gas Pipeline Project in Cotonou, Benin. The agenda of the meeting was to follow up on action points from the previous meeting held in Accra last year, provide feedback on WAGP’s operational and financial issues as well as tariff issues and to finalize the Western Interconnection Agreement.
The meeting was hosted by the Benin Minister of Energy, Water and Mines, Dona Jean-Claude Houssou and brought together senior government officials from Ghana, Nigeria and Togo as well as key stakeholders such as West African Gas Pipeline Authority (WAGPA) and West African Pipeline Company Limited (WAPCo).
Proceedings were opened by Dona Jean-Claude Houssou. In his inaugural address, the Minister reinstated the importance of the project and urged for a fruitful deliberation. He further thanked his colleague Ministers present for taking time out of their busy schedule to honour the invitation.
Hon. Boakye Agyarko, chairman of the COM, in his address tasked all member states to work together and help ensure that the project succeeds. “We need to dedicate ourselves in ensuring that WAPCo survives” he said. He further urged stakeholders to find common ground in resolving key issues such as reliable supply of gas and payment guarantee.
Representative of the Nigerian Minister of state in charge of Petroleum Resources, Engr. Saidu A. Mohammed affirmed Nigeria’s commitment to the project. He emphasized that the Nigerian Government is working assiduously to ramp-up gas supply to about 70 mmscfd this year. According to Engr. Mohammed, the ramping up of gas supply will be achieved because the Nigerian Government is making headways in resolving onshore gas pipeline vandalization.
The COM re-affirmed its commitment to the project and tasked WAPCo to look into expanding its business model. The Ministers expressed their profound gratitude to the people and Government of Benin, for the warm hospitality accorded to them and their delegation during their stay in Cotonou.
Other dignitaries present were representatives from ECOWAS, Ghana’s Ministry of Energy, N-Gas, WAGPA and WAPCo.
King A. Wellington
Ministry of Energy