The European Union is strengthening relations with Nigeria as it seeks to diversify sources of its natural gas imports in an attempt to reduce reliance on Russian energy.

Nigeria is the fourth biggest liquified natural gas supplier to Europe. At least 40% of Nigeria’s gas is currently exported to Europe.

The EU seeks to cut the use of Russian gas in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

It’s diplomats visited the Nigeria’s state-owned oil company on Monday for meetings on increasing cooperation in the energy sector.

“We are not only major clients for Nigeria, we are also major partners in the oil and gas sector because some of the companies that are working with you are from Europe. So we share the same interest and same objectives,” the EU Ambassador in Nigeria, Samuela Isopi said.

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Chief Executive assured the European delegation that the company was keen on increasing gas supply to the global market.

Nigeria authorities say the country has a proven natural gas reserve of 209.5 trillion cubic feet (TCF) as at January 2022.

Revenue from oil and gas account for about two-thirds of Nigeria’s funding.