Algeria, Niger, Nigeria ink deal to build trans-Saharan gas pipeline

A photo of a petroleum pipeline under construction

Algeria, Niger and Nigeria signed on Thursday a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the construction of a gas pipeline across the Sahara Desert that will supply Europe with additional gas.

The Trans-Saharan gas pipeline is an estimated 13 billion U.S. dollar project that could send up to 30 billion cubic metres a year of supplies to Europe.

The European Union is seeking additional gas supplies from Nigeria, at a time when the bloc is preparing for a reduction in Russian supplies.

The EU currently imports 14 percent of its total liquefied natural gas (LNG) supplies from Nigeria. The pipeline could double that percentage.

The pipeline is expected to span 4,000 km and has been slated to start in Warri, Nigeria, and to end in Hassi R’Mel, Algeria, where it would connect to existing pipelines that run to Europe.

The idea was first proposed more than 40 years ago and an agreement was signed between the countries in 2009, but progress stalled.