KOTA KINABALU (Jan 4): Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Hajiji Haji Noor launched the Sabah Gas Masterplan, a collaboration between the State Government and Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas), to guide investments in Sabah’s natural gas resources.
Speaking at the Sabah Gas Masterplan launch in Menara Petronas 2 here on Tuesday, Hajiji said it marked another important milestone for Sabah after the inking of the Commercial Collaboration Agreement (CCA) on Dec 7 last year.
The Masterplan highlights three distinct investment opportunities for Sabah’s natural gas resources, the first being the construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant with a capacity of 2.0 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) at the Sipitang Oil and Gas Industrial Park (SOGIP).
The LNG facility, the first in the state will also provide opportunities for Sabah to expand its LNG distribution across the state through activities such as the virtual pipeline system, allowing more industrial and commercial businesses to access and utilise natural gas as a cleaner source of energy.
Secondly, the Sabah State Government will be taking up a more prominent role in gas marketing and distribution in Sabah, with 120 MMscfd volume of gas to be made
available for the development of key industries in the state.
The natural gas will be supplied from the Sabah Oil and Gas Terminal in Kimanis, and Sabah Gas Terminal in Tuaran.
Signifying the progress of this intent, a Heads of Agreement (HOA) was signed between Sabah Energy Corporation Sdn Bhd and Petronas for the supply of 70 MMscfd of natural gas, as well as the document exchange of a previously signed HOA for 50 MMscfd of natural gas supply, for utilisation in Sabah that was witnessed by the Chief Minister.
Thirdly, the Masterplan highlights a suite of petrochemical derivative options for Sabah to attract investors, based on market needs and future outlook, leveraging on locally available feedstock.
Meanwhile, Hajiji said several proposals have also been recommended to the Masterplan that included for more natural gas exploration activities to ensure sustainable
supply, a comprehensive development plan for Sabah must be formulated to create more value-adding industry in Sabah including petrochemical downstream development.
SOGIP must be made Sabah’s future prime oil and gas downstream investment site but there are still works to be done to make it more appealing to investors, he said.
Another proposal was on the need to evaluate the readily available local talents and to improve them to meet the needs of the oil and gas, manufacturing and construction industries.
“A State entity must be identified to monitor the implementation of the Sabah Gas Masterplan’s recommendations,” he said.
As a result of the joint research undertaken by the State Government and Petronas into the oil and gas industry to get a long-term economic return for Sabah and its people, the Sabah Gas Masterplan was endorsed by the State Cabinet in October last year.
“It is a testament of the collaborative effort between both parties to sustainably pursue the full potential of the domestic natural gas industry,” he said.
“We appreciate Petronas’ collaboration with us on the Sabah Gas Masterplan, including in efforts to spur an attractive and competitive investment ecosystem for investors.
“My aspiration is for Sabah to stake its rightful claims and chart a path that benefits Sabahans and its future generations. We will keep striving for equitable development to ensure that there will be ample opportunity for Sabahans to develop and that they will enjoy tangible benefits from the efforts undertaken,” he said.