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Germany is interested in financing the development of critical minerals and natural gas in Nigeria, Reuters has reported, citing Chancellor Olaf Scholz who is on a visit to sub-Saharan Africa.
"There is a willingness to invest, especially in critical minerals," Scholz said, adding that Germany welcomed Nigeria’s plans to expand its LNG export capacity, noting "If we are successful, if there is a better chance of exporting the produced gas ... it is then the question for German companies to do their private business."
Germany is the largest natural gas consumer in the European Union and in Europe as a whole. Since last year, it has been hard-pressed to secure enough supply after the loss of most Russian pipeline supply.
With Norway the only remaining large pipeline gas supplier, Germany, like the rest of the EU, has had to turn to LNG, which is significantly more expensive than pipeline gas, for lack of viable alternatives.
Nigeria is one of the oldest producers of LNG from its Nigeria LNG, or NLNG, facility. The enterprise is a joint venture between Shell, Eni, and NNPC and produces around 7% of the global supply of liquefied gas.
The current German government, a coalition between the center-right and the Green party, has not been openly in favor of natural gas but the necessities of life have outweighed any potential climate-related concerns. Last year, Germany revived plans for LNG import terminals and changed its mind about long-term LNG deals.
To date, it has two floating LNG import terminals and another in the making, to become operational in the first quarter of next year. A fourth one is also in the plans. The government has also inked two long-term LNG supply deals recently, one with U.S. Venture Global for 2.25 million tons annually and another with QatarEnergy for 2 million tons annually.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.