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Nigaz is a joint venture between the Russian gas company Gazprom EP International B.V. (100% affiliate of OAO Gazprom) and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.[1] Nigaz was established in 2009. It plans to invest US$2.5 billion to build oil and gas refineries, pipelines and gas power stations in Nigeria.[2][3] Launching the company, Russian president Dmitry Medvedev announced his intention to form a major energy partnership with Nigeria at a meeting in Abuja with Nigerian president Umaru Yar'Adua.[4]

The company's name, a portmanteau of "Nigeria" and "Gazprom", attracted media attention because of its similarity to the potentially offensive word "nigga" and slang derivative "niggaz" in African American Vernacular English.[2][5] The Economist said the name choice showed "a refreshing ignorance of politically incorrect language".[6]


  1. ^ "Medvedev Discusses OPEC in Angola". The Moscow Times. 2009-07-01. Retrieved 2009-07-01. 
  2. ^ a b "Gazprom stirs racism talk with new gig". Upstream Online. NHST Media Group. 2009-07-01. Retrieved 2009-07-03. 
  3. ^ "Racism debate after Russian and Nigerian gas companies combine to form 'Nigaz'". Mail Online. 2009-07-02. Retrieved 2009-07-03. 
  4. ^ Harding, Luke (2009-06-30). "Branding blunder gives Russia-Nigeria energy linkup a bad name". The Guardian. Retrieved 2009-07-01. 
  5. ^ Whitehead, Jennifer (2009-06-29). "Gazprom accused of branding fail over Nigerian joint venture 'Nigaz'". Brand Republic. Retrieved 2009-07-03. 
  6. ^ "He who pays for the pipelines calls the tune". The Economist. 2009-07-16. Retrieved 2011-09-20.