Thursday, September 3, 2015

Mozambique’s Area 1 oil bloc requires investment of US$24 billion

The oil groups involved in exploiting the Area 1 bloc of northern Mozambique’s Rovuma Basin plan to invest nearly US$24 billion to begin extracting natural gas, the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency reports.The following Indian state-controlled groups have stakes in the bloc: Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) via ONGC Videsh – 16 percent; Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) – 10 percent; and Oil India Ltd (OIL) – 4 percent. This means that the Indian state holds more than the main partner and operator, the US group Anadarko Petroleum, which has a 26.5 percent stake.An ONGC Videsh official cited by PTI indicated that the Area 1 bloc partners will have to invest US$23-24 billion to begin extracting, processing and liquefying natural gas for subsequent export to consumer markets, among them India and Japan.The aim is to begin processing natural gas in the first quarter of 2020 at a facility to be built on land, said the source cited by the agency, who referred to initial production of 12 million tons.This Area 1 bloc has capacity to annually produce 20 million tons of liquefied natural gas, thereby becoming the second biggest natural gas project after Ras Laffan in Qatar, operated by the US group ExxonMobil.Besides the three Indian state-controlled groups, partners in the bloc operated by the Anadarko Petroleum group include Japan’s Mitsui group (20 percent), Mozambique’s state-owned Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (15 percent) and the Thai group PTTEP (8.5 percent).

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