BY FRANCIS KADIRI, ABUJA.
Ajaokuta Steel Company’s (ASCL) machine workshop is poised to play a crucial role in the Federal Government’s proposed Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) project by producing essential accessories for gas cylinders used in CNG-powered buses; Nigeria’s Minister of Steel Development, Prince Shuaibu Abubakar Audu has said, adding that local production of components aligns perfectly with President Bola Tinubu’s Gas Initiative Agenda, and will foster self-sufficiency while contributing to the country’s economic growth and development.
A statement signed by Abdullahi Haruna, Special Adviser on Media and Communications to the Minister said the development was made known to newsmen during the maiden tour of the minister to Ajaokuta Steel Company as part of government’s plan to resuscitate the country’s ailing steel sector.
The statement said Ajaokuta Steel Company’s engineering workshop presents a unique opportunity for the storage of Compressed Natural Gas in specialized CNG tanks, adding that the innovative use of ASCL’s infrastructure promises to bolster the country’s energy sector and reduce dependency on traditional fossil fuels.
“Prince Audu explained that the machine shop is well-prepared for the manufacture of various tools, implements, carriages, and spare parts,” adding that this expanded production capacity could lead to the creation of jobs and will contribute to the growth of industries such as wheelbarrows, tricycle trucks (keke Napep), and more.
Haruna noted that the minister’s forward-thinking approach to leverage on the assets of Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited for the CNG project underscores the government’s commitment to sustainable energy solutions and economic development.
The Special Adviser quoted the minister as saying: “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,” adding that the initiative will mitigate the impacts of subsidy removal.