Opportunities growing for LNG offshore West, East Africa

Oct. 20, 2023
An $800-billion capex program related to LNG is developing in Africa, according to Wood Mackenzie.

Offshore staff

CAPE TOWN, South Africa  An $800-billion capex program related to LNG is developing in Africa, according to Wood Mackenzie.

Upstream research director Ian Thom, speaking at the African Energy Week event in Cape Town, said by the end of this decade there would be world-scale LNG projects in Mozambique and floating LNG (FLNG) across five countries.

“With abundant gas resources, Africa is looking at all opportunities to develop gas for domestic and export markets,” he said. “The niche role that FLNG plays has gained traction in Africa due to its flexibility, quick time to market and suitability for smaller volumes. We see more examples where FLNG could be applied to African resources, and we expect there is more to come on this growth story.”

Currently, the continent exports just over 40 MM metric tons/year of LNG, and other projects are under development in Sub-Saharan Africa, including the bp-operated Tortue FLNG offshore Senegal and Mauritania, which is due to go onstream next year.

Tortue Phase 1 will add 2.4 MMt/year of supply growth, he added. “With easy access to European markets, deepwater gas in Senegal-Mauritania offers significant potential in what are relatively stable and supportive countries.”

In Mozambique, Coral Sul FLNG shipped its first cargo in November 2022. However, Rovuma LNG and Mozambique LNG have both stalled.

“Mozambique needs improved security to resume construction of onshore LNG facilities,” Thom said. “Rovuma and Mozambique LNG are central to a potential doubling of African LNG supply by 2035, but there is a risk that exports could flatline longer term if these projects fail to materialize.”

The situation appears to be uncertain for oil production too in Africa’s traditional hubs, with problems offsetting production declines at mature assets. Big oil producers Nigeria, Angola and Egypt could all see oil production level off toward the end of the decade, he warned.

 “However, there could still be some upside from reserve growth or yet-to-find resources. TotalEnergies recent discovery at Ntokon in Nigeria is a great example where new oil discoveries drive incremental growth. And the exploration success in Namibia underlines how deepwater exploration can generate strong investment opportunities.”

10.20.2023

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