The 6th train of the Nigeria LNG (NLNG) gas export plant is due to become operational before the end of 2007 and when on-stream, will enable the entire complex to produce up to 22 million tpy of LNG and further strengthen its position as the largest business unit in Africa.

Without Train 6, the NLNG plant has an overall capacity of around 18 million tpy of LNG, as well as 3.4 million tpy of LPG, and requires as much as 2.8 billion cubic feet per day of feed-gas intake. This will be significantly increased by the operation of the new unit, expected to propel further growth and continue the company’s status as Nigeria’s most prosperous private sector corporate.

The NLNG plant, jointly owned by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Shell, Total and Eni, was built on largely reclaimed land in Finima, Bonny Island in Rivers State at an investment of at least $12bn and makes yearly net profits of $4bn, according to sources familiar with the company. This net profit is produced from a turnover of around $6bn generated from the export of gas.

The company was incorporated as a limited liability company back in 1989, to harness Nigeria’s vast natural gas resources and produce LNG, LPG and natural gas liquids for export and has a wholly-owned subsidiary named Bonny Gas Transport (BGT Limited), which provides shipping services for NLNG.

Construction of the plant site was completed in 1996, the plant was ready for start-up in August 1999 and the production of LNG commenced in September of the same year, with the gas giant now having emerged and considered as the largest business unit in Africa just 7 years after production began.