Mega gas deals are being signed in Mozambique hand over fist, each one bigger and more catalytic than the previous. The opportunities for one of the poorest countries in the world to pick itself up by the bootstraps are immense. As South Africa dilly-dallies over the release of its Integrated Resource Plan, local companies could look to our northern neighbour to chase new opportunities.
In June 2017 Italian oil and gas company ENI committed to investing $10-billion on the building of Coral South, a floating liquified natural gas (FLNG) project off the Rovuma basin in Mozambique, the world's first ultra-deep-water FLNG facility.
In June 2019, Mozambique LNG (led by US-based Anadarko) committed $20-billion on the development of integrated offshore and onshore gas fields, through LNG, in the Rovuma basin, east of Palma, and in December 2019, Rovuma LNG (led by ExxonMobil and ENI) is expected to commit $30-billion to develop the same.
Each of these projects marked the largest investment of its kind in Africa, only to be overtaken by the next. The chance for Mozambique to grow its $14-billion economy and repay its government debt, now sitting at 100% of GDP, is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Standard Bank, which is...