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ABUJA/LAGOS, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Nigeria LNG (NLNG) signed a long-awaited final investment decision on its Train 7 processing unit in Abuja on Friday, taking a step forward in increasing its liquefied natural gas production.
NNPC and partners Eni ENI.MI, Total TOTF.PA and Shell RDSa.L attended the signing ceremony for Train 7, which is expected to boost Nigeria's LNG output by 35% to 30 million tonnes per year.
The agreement is a bright spot for Nigeria, a nation rich in oil and gas that has been working for years, with limited success, to boost its output of both resources.
It also marks a moment of amity with international oil majors, even as a tax dispute and a new law increasing the government's take on deepwater oil production have rankled some companies.
Nigeria's declining LNG production last year pushed it down to the fifth largest producer, with the United States taking its place at number four.
Shell, Chevron and ExxonMobil, are trying to pare back some Nigerian assets as they focus on projects elsewhere, including U.S. shale.
NNPC Group Managing Director Mele Kyari said Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari has directed NLNG to push forward to Train 12.
"We are on course," Kyari said.
(Reporting by Camillus Eboh in Abuja and Libby George in Lagos, editing by Louise Heavens and Jason Neely)
((Libby.George@thomsonreuters.com; +234 809 065 5059 ; Reuters Messaging: email@example.com))
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