May 26, 2024

Afolabi Akinrogunde, Investment Manager, All On,

 

Oredola Adeola

 

Nigeria needs to meet the energy needs of its population, generate foreign exchange to keep the economy running and participate in the global energy transition by strategically integrating different elements of the energy ecosystem at the same scale.

 

Afolabi Akinrogunde, Investment Manager at All On, made this remark as a moderator  at a Panel Session II,  themed, “The Transition Towards Energy Sustainability: Strategies and Tools for developing Countries”,  during the just concluded 46th edition of Nigeria Annual International Conference and Exhibition (NAICE) organised by the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE).

 

According to him, Nigeria must do whatever is required as a country to harness all its abundant resources (renewable energy, oil and gas, and other sources) while keying into addressing all the trilemma to generate electricity for all.

 

He highlighted the disparity in energy consumption, revealing that an average Nigerian receives only 1/5th of the electricity that an average Ghanaian receives and 35 times less than the average South African.

 

He said, “No matter the good numbers in terms of investment and resources reserve that we have in Nigeria, once the per capita energy consumption of the over 200 million people in Nigeria is divided with that of Ghana and South Africa nothing will be left.

Akinrogunde stressed the importance of addressing this energy poverty and leveraging Nigeria’s energy scope and opportunities. He said, “To fully harness Nigeria’s energy potential, government policies, and support are crucial.”

 

He said the trilemma lies in the ability of the government to meet the energy needs of over 200 million Nigerians, generate foreign exchange to sustain the economy, and participate in the global energy transition.

 

He emphasized the need for the Government to strike a balance between providing energy to Nigerians, earning foreign exchange, and embracing the energy transition.

 

The AllOn Investment Manager revealed that Nigeria has so much energy scope and opportunities that can be harnessed. He emphasized the need for policies that promote a friendly environment, provide tax credits, and eliminate subsidies to boost investment in the renewable energy industry.

 

Akinrogunde proposed integrating different elements of the renewable energy ecosystem to ensure that each part can thrive.

 

He said, “For instance, All On, has invested approximately 2.5 million dollars in Auxano Solar, a premier solar panel assembly company in Nigeria. This investment is aimed at expanding Auxano’s solar panel assembly capacity by over 50 percent.

 

“This facility located beside the Dangote refinery plant in Ibeju Lekki will be commissioned. We are very proud of that particular project.
He further noted that the government needs to increase the energy supply to meet the needs of over 200 million people, adding that the country also needs to generate foreign exchange to keep its economy running.
He however, expressed concern that while the country’s crude oil may in the future be channeled as feedstock to the country’s refineries and sold at suboptimal market prices when the same crude oil could be sold at the international market to earn the much-needed forex.
“The Nigerian government needs to consider how to earn foreign exchange to supply energy to Nigerians while still participating in the energy transition, running refineries, and making crude oil available.
He further emphasised that funding for oil and gas projects is now very difficult, as funding institutions will ask for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) requirements and criteria to be fulfilled to ensure that the project meets the funding standards.
“Nigeria has the resources needed to address the energy poverty in the country, and one element of the ecosystem does not need to suffer for the other.
Akinrogunde, Investment Manager at All On, therefore emphasized the need for Nigeria to integrate various elements of the ecosystem to ensure reliable power generation.
He also highlighted the importance of providing alternative energy sources for areas where solar power is not feasible, suggesting that gas could be utilized for this purpose.
Stressing the need for increased investment in upstream gas to meet the growing demand for power generation, Akinrogunde emphasized the importance of addressing these issues and making decisions that are in the best interest of the country.