Researcher: Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline a road to cross-border development - Energy

The Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline is significant as a strategic project aimed at improving energy security for many countries in Africa and Europe.

The head of the Atlas Center for the Analysis of Political and Institutional Indicators in Morocco, researcher Mohamed Boudin, said that the project has multiple advantages, the most important of which is that it represents the main way to create development and integration on a large scale and across borders.

In an article entitled “Nigeria-Morocco Gas Pipeline Project… Geopolitical and Economic Advantages”, published by the Senegalese “Rafie Dakar” website, Boden added that the importance of the project is reflected in the fact that it is located at the crossroads of energy interests for a number of international actors.

He explained that the logical conception of the Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline project was not intended to shorten distances, but rather to be a path to improve the lives of about 400 million people.

Moroccan-Nigerian vision

Boden said that Morocco and Nigeria could have been satisfied with thinking about a pipeline project that would transport Nigerian gas to Morocco through only 3 or 4 countries, namely Benin, Burkina Faso, Mali and Mauritania, but the two countries’ vision of the line presented other considerations, such as security, stability, integration and sustainable development in 11 countries west Africa.

Nigerian gas pipeline

The researcher pointed out that recent developments on the international scene have directed the focus to energy sources and contributed to consolidating the strategic, economic and geopolitical importance of the Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline project, which he described as “the fruit of a common will between two leading countries in the African continent.”

Regarding the economic advantages, the Moroccan researcher said that his country aspires to enhance options and alternatives in the energy markets, while Nigeria hopes that the project will enhance the gross domestic product, as the life of the project will reach at least 25 years, based on the expected production and consumption rates.

The countries through which the Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline will pass will also be able to provide enough electricity for local consumption, manufacturing, agriculture and crop production, in addition to providing job opportunities.

geopolitical advantages

Nigerian gas
Gas project in Nigeria – Photo from the Nigerian Guardian

In addition to the economic benefits provided by the Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline, it provides other advantages, the most important of which is that it gives Morocco a new impetus in the continent of Africa, in addition to supporting its fight against illegal immigration, and also helps reduce pollution and stimulate clean industrialization.

The project gives an important role to Morocco in the middle of African countries, on the economic, political and developmental levels, in addition to that it will become an investment destination in many projects, noting that Morocco and Nigeria will have their say among the major countries that speak the language of energy.

The Moroccan researcher concluded that the Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline project needs international partners, whether from the public or private sectors, as a long-term partnership that needs a collective framework of action to accelerate economic growth.

Project Developments

On April 27, the Australian company Worley announced that it had won a contract to provide a forward engineering design study for the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline project.

The company said that the line, which will be more than 7,000 kilometers long, is supported by the Moroccan National Office of Hydrocarbons and Minerals, in addition to support from the Nigerian National Oil Company.

Nigeria had announced the postponement of the completion date of the project, which Algeria and Morocco are competing for, and the start of its operation, to the first quarter of next year 2023, instead of the current year 2022.

The Australian company indicated that the Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline will be the longest undersea pipeline in the world, and the second longest gas pipeline in general, as it connects Nigeria with Morocco, and extends to 11 countries in West Africa, before reaching Europe.

Pipeline Specification

The Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline extends for 5,660 kilometers, which was agreed upon since the start of talks between Morocco and Nigeria in 2016, during the visit of the King of Morocco to Abuja.

The pipeline passes through the territory of 13 African countries, namely Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Senegal, Mauritania, and Morocco, while its cost is more than $25 billion.

The Nigerian-Moroccan gas pipeline aims to transport between 30 and 40 billion cubic meters of Nigerian gas annually.

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