Invest in African Energy (IAE) 2024 Shines Spotlight on Africa’s Gas Future

By Stermy 4 Min Read

Africa’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) export capacity is poised for substantial growth in the coming years. Nigeria, for instance, plans to boost its output from 22 million tons per annum (mtpa) to over 31 mtpa, while Mozambique aims to increase its production from 2.2 mtpa to well over 43 mtpa by the end of the decade.

This expansion, coupled with new discoveries in countries like Namibia, Ivory Coast, and Senegal, underscores Africa’s potential as a significant global LNG exporter.

At the Invest in African Energy Forum in Paris, there was a critical examination of the future of Africa’s gas and LNG industry. Against the backdrop of deepwater gas, LNG, and FLNG (Floating Liquefied Natural Gas) projects, countries such as Senegal, The Republic of the Congo, and Mozambique are emerging as key exporters, leading a transformative shift.

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Additionally, pivotal gas initiatives in Ivory Coast, Nigeria, and Angola are poised to drive domestic industrialization efforts, ushering in a new era of economic growth and energy sustainability across the continent.

Related: Critical Minerals Africa Summit to Profile Africa’s Investment Outlook

Sponsored by independent oil company Perenco, the forum explored market outlooks, investment trends, regulatory strategies, technological advancements, and new entrants in Africa’s LNG sector.

Per Magnus Nysveen, Senior Partner & Head of Analysis at Rystad Energy, highlighted the growing demand for LNG as a transitional energy source. “Africa could account for a quarter of global gas production, while ensuring equitable resource utilization to tackle energy poverty,” he emphasized.

Armel Simondin, CEO of Perenco, outlined the company’s African strategy, focusing on gas projects and gas-to-power initiatives. He mentioned their involvement in a gas-to-power project in Gabon, which combines gas-to-power and LPG (liquefied petroleum gas), including the development of a technologically advanced LPG processing facility.

Julius Rone, Group Managing Director of UTM Offshore, provided updates on Nigeria’s first indigenous-owned Floating LNG project. The UTM FLNG, located in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria, represents a significant investment of $5 billion and aims to be completed by Q3 2028.

Dr. Bi-Dia-Ayo Ibata, from the Republic of the Congo’s SNPC, shared insights into the rapid development of a gas project in collaboration with Eni. Ibata highlighted the project’s speed, with plans to increase production to 3 million tons beyond 2025.

Related: Brimont Joins Angola Oil & Gas (AOG) 2024 as Bronze Sponsor

Speakers discussed various challenges in developing gas projects in Africa, including environmental considerations, financing, infrastructure development, fiscal stability, and technological adaptation amid the energy transition.

Cobie Loper, SVP for Energy Equipment at NOV, emphasized the importance of adapting technology to project needs amidst the energy transition, noting the industry’s capital constraints.

Despite these challenges, the need for energy access in Africa remains acute, with millions lacking electricity and clean cooking facilities. Dr. Ibata stressed the importance of transitioning from coal to gas to drive development, echoing the success seen in Western countries.

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