Trans-Saharan Gas Pipeline To Boost Nigeria-Algeria Cooperation 

Yemisi Izuora

Nigeria is reportedly making strides towards the revival of the stalled Trans-Saharan Gas Pipeline project that has been on the pipeline since the 1970s.

The project, has been structured to run from Kano State through Niger to Hassi R’Mel in Algeria, but faced numerous challenges over the years including opposition by environmentalists preserving the Niger River delta, and terror threats from the militant groups that threatened to attack pipeline crew.

Recently, Toufik Hakkar, the head of Société Nationale pour la Recherche, la Production, le Transport, la Transformation, et la Commercialisation des Hydrocarbures s.p.a. Sonatrach, raised hope on possible actualisation of the project when he announced that the technical layout for the construction of the pipeline had been completed.

The route for the gas pipeline, according to Mr. Hakkar, has also been decided and Sonatrach, which is an Algerian government-owned company formed to exploit the hydrocarbon resources of the North African country, is now preparing to engage in talks with Niger and Nigeria in regards to the implementation of the said project.

Mohamed Arkab, Algeria’s Minister of Energy and Mines affirmed that the government will pay special attention to the rapid completion of the Trans-Saharan Gas Pipeline project “which will give a new impetus to the relationship between Nigeria and Algeria in terms of technical cooperation and capacity-strengthening”.

“This project will have a significant social and economic impact in the transit countries, within the framework of environmental protection and sustainable development,” added Minister Arkab.

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