ISSN 2330-717X

Mozambique Opens 6th Offshore Licensing Round, Courting Russian Companies

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The Government of Mozambique has opened the 6th licensing round and is currently inviting foreign oil companies including those from Russia to participate and bid for the development of projects in the sector in the country.

Carlos Zacarias, Chairman of Mozambique’s National Oil Institute (INP), said that the country would be open to evaluating proposals for the concession of hydrocarbon exploration blocks from Russian companies such as Gazprom, Rosneft and Zarubezhneft and from oil companies from other countries.

According to reports, Carlos Zacarias accompanied Max Tonela, the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy have already held meetings in Moscow with executives from the three companies:  Zarubezhneft, Gazprom and Rosneft.

It is expected that Zarubezhneft, Rozhneft and Gasprom, would join investment opportunities in Mozambique. Rozhneft is considered a little more advanced, as it has a concession of part of Angoche.

Zacarias, however, indicated that the country would continue to promote its potential in the area of hydrocarbons mainly gas, because this resource is important for the energy transition, as it is the least polluting of the fossil fuels. “There are already predefined areas for the next international hydrocarbon tender in the country,” he said.

Mozambique already has the presence of several multinational oil sector companies, mainly in the Rovuma basin, an area rich in natural gas. Despite growing international pressure to abandon the use of fossil fuels, the Mozambican government argues that natural gas will be a crucial source for the energy transition as it is the least polluting of the fossil fuels.

Reports indicated further that a delegation from the Mozambican Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy visited Russia for the plenary meeting of the Kimberley Process, an international mechanism for controlling the diamond business, which will decide on Mozambique’s membership of that body. The delegation held meetings with Russian companies from the mineral resources and energy sector.

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Kester Kenn Klomegah

Kester Kenn Klomegah is an independent researcher and a policy consultant on African affairs in the Russian Federation and Eurasian Union. He has won media awards for highlighting economic diplomacy in the region with Africa. Currently, Klomegah is a Special Representative for Africa on the Board of the Russian Trade and Economic Development Council. He enjoys travelling and visiting historical places in Eastern and Central Europe. Klomegah is a frequent and passionate contributor to Eurasia Review.

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