ABIDJAN, 4 November 2013 - Some 60 specialists representing the ministries of Energy and Industry of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) will share experiences and discuss the options that natural gas offers for the economic development of a country or region during a seminar that opened in Abidjan today.
The two-day event was organized by the Government of Côte d’Ivoire, the International Gas Union (IGU), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the ECOWAS Commission, the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) and the Petroci oil company. The event was opened by the Minister of Petrol and Energy of Côte d’Ivoire, Adama Toungara.
The seminar is expected to highlight the process of building up energy systems where natural gas and renewable gas are an important element for social and economic development. IGU has invited experts in the field of low-carbon fuel that will present case studies from Egypt, Malaysia, Norway and Qatar. Organizers have underlined the fact that natural gas, in combination with renewable energy, is not only a means to generate electricity, but also contributes to industrial and economic development at the national and regional levels.
ECOWAS has already taken purposive strides towards ameliorating its energy challenges in a sustainable way and both natural gas and renewable energy play a major role in the initiatives taken. UNIDO supports the fifteen ECOWAS countries in transforming their energy systems to more sustainable patterns. ECREEE supports the development of renewable energy at a regional level and favors the combination of different sustainable sources including natural gas to build an integrated energy system. IGU represents over 95 per cent of the global gas market through its more than 120 members worldwide. Many IGU member countries have successfully developed sustainable energy systems, which includes a major share of natural gas.