KOTA KINABALU, Jan 4 — The launch of the Sabah Gas Masterplan by the Sabah government in collaboration with Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) focuses on three main aspects to drive natural gas investment in the state.

Chief Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor said the first aspect entails 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).

He said the LNG facility would provide an opportunity to expand LNG distribution in the state, encompassing activities such as virtual pipeline systems to enable more industrial and commercial businesses to access and use natural gas as a cleaner source of energy.

“Secondly, the state government will take a more prominent role in leading marketing and distribution activities in Sabah, with 120 MMscfd (million standard cubic feet per day) gas supply provided for the development of key industries in the state,” he said at the simultaneous launch of the Sabah Gas Masterplan, Natural Gas Supply Heads of Agreement (HOA) and Menara Petronas 2 here today.

Hajiji, who is also Sabah finance minister, said the natural gas would be supplied from the Sabah Oil and Gas Terminal in Kimanis and the Tuaran Gas Terminal through the signing of an HOA between Sabah Energy Corporation Sdn Bhd (SEC) and Petronas to supply 70 MMscfd of natural gas, and exchange of HOA documents for 50 MMscfd of natural gas supply for use in Sabah.

The third aspect emphasises a set of petrochemical derivatives of choice for Sabah to attract investors based on market needs and future prospects, namely utilising raw materials available in the country.

Earlier, Hajiji officiated the new 11-storey Menara Petronas 2 worth RM190 million, which was built since March 2016 and completed in April last year, which links to the existing Petronas tower.

At the event, Hajiji, Sabah Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun, Petronas chairman Tan Sri Mohd Bakke Salleh, Petronas president and group chief executive officer Datuk Tengku Muhammad Taufik witnessed the handing over of the Sabah Gas Masterplan from Petronas senior vice-president of corporate strategy Mazuin Ismail to Sabah State Secretary Datuk Safar Untong

The HOA was inked by Petronas senior vice-president of Malaysia Petroleum Management Mohamed Firouz Asnan on behalf of Petronas, while the SEC was represented by its chief executive officer, Datuk Harun Ismail.

Mohd Bakke expressed confidence that the master plan will open a new chapter of cooperation between Sabah and Petronas to help the state create a more competitive and prosperous economy.

Citing SOGIP as an example, he said the state government had the opportunity to expand natural gas distribution coverage by using a virtual pipeline system that would enable more consumers to utilise cleaner and sustainable energy sources even at a distance from the existing physical natural gas pipeline network.

“Our hope is that these downstream investments will open up synergistic opportunities with other sectors such as agriculture and manufacturing, as well as strengthen the economic viability of Sabah,” he said. — Bernama