In five years, concessionaires invested 18.4 billion dollars in oil and gas exploration in Mozambique, but by 2022 this investment had fallen to less than half, official figures show.
A report on “Oil and Gas Investment Statistics in Mozambique 2018-22”, released this Tuesday, November 14, by the National Statistics Institute (INE), says that the concessionaires have invested, of this total, 15.3 billion dollars in field development work, and the rest in research, evaluation, studies and production, as well as in the demobilization and abandonment of wells.
Overall, the concessionaires invested more than 2.1 billion dollars in these works in 2022, less than half the record of almost 4.6 billion dollars in 2021 or the 4.5 billion dollars in 2020.
“This drop is partly justified by the start, in the second half of 2022, of offshore gas production in the Rovuma basin, as capital costs have fallen significantly, mainly related to the floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) platform,” explains INE.
The report uses information from the National Petroleum Institute (INP) and covers all active hydrocarbon exploration licenses in Mozambique until 2022.
“In 2022, expenditure in the production phase reached a total of 368.9 million dollars, almost triple the figure recorded in 2021 and also the highest since 2018. This trend is mainly explained by the start of gas production and export in Cabo Delgado, in the offshore project in the Rovuma basin, in the Coral Sul project,” adds INE.
Area 4 in the Rovuma basin, in the north of the country, is operated by Mozambique Rovuma Venture (MRV), a joint venture co-owned by ExxonMobil, Eni and CNPC (China), which has a 70% stake in the concession contract, with natural gas production starting in 2022. Galp, Kogas (South Korea) and Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (Mozambique) each hold a 10% stake.
Eni, the concessionaire for Rovuma Area 4, is already discussing with the Mozambican government the development of a second floating platform, a copy of the first and called Coral Norte, to increase gas extraction, a source from the Italian oil company told Lusa at the beginning of October.
This plan involves the acquisition of a second FNLG floating platform for the Coral North area, identical to the one that has been operating in the Coral South area since mid-2022.
“Eni is working towards the development of Coral Norte through a second FLNG in Mozambique, taking advantage of the experience and lessons learned in the Coral Sul FLNG, including those related to costs and execution time,” added the same source from the oil company, the delegated operator of that consortium.