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17.06.2005 Togo

Togo, Benin Energy Ministers hail Gas Pipeline Project

GNA

Tema, June 17, GNA - The Ministers of Energy of Benin and Togo on Friday said they saw the West African Gas Pipeline (WAGP) Project as a reliable, cost-effective and secure source of energy needed to turn the economies of the beneficiary countries around.

Mr Kamarou Fassassi, Benin Minister of Energy and his Togolese counterpart, Mr Issifou Kantchati, who paid a familiarization visit to the Concrete-Coating Plant of WAGP at Tema, said after a long period of discussions and negotiations, they now saw the project moving from a dream to reality. Mr Randall Ramey, WAGP Project Director, and Mr Clement Oke, General Manager, West African Pipeline Company, took the Ministers around the Project Site.

The Ministers' visit comes a week after President John Agyekum Kufuor kick-started the coating works. Mr Oke told the Ministers that the second shipload of pipes for concrete-coat at the Plant berthed on Thursday night with about 8,000 pipes. He said from August the concrete-coated pipes would be shipped to Takoradi for the 569-kilometre main offshore segment of the Project to commence.

The offshore route of the pipeline would skirt the coastline through Ghana, Togo, Benin and Nigeria, approximately 15 to 20 kilometres offshore in depths of between 30 and 75 metres using a large barge, "Sea Horizon". It is expected to be completed by September 2006. In all, eight shiploads of pipes are due in the country before the end of November 2005. About 52,000 pipes would be coated in Ghana for the 678-km pipeline Project that would bring treated natural gas from Nigeria to Benin, Togo and Ghana. An average of 200 pipes would be coated per day from now to the end of January 2006

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