Three majors are vying for the same block offshore Mozambique in Mozambique's fifth licensing round, according to the round application details released by the country's National Petroleum Institute (INP) today.
It reveals that ExxonMobil, in partnership with Rosneft, Eni, with partners Sasol and Statoil, and Total, have all separately applied for area A5-A in the Angoche basin, offshore northern Mozambique.
Rosneft had already revealed its application led by ExxonMobil for area A5-A/B in the Angoche basin and Z5-C/D in the Zambezi Delta late last week. Eni has also both applied for the A5-B area.
Mozambique has become one of the most promising countries in Africa in terms of natural gas and coal resources. There have been prolific natural gas discoveries in Mozambique's northern offshore Rovuma basin since 2010, led by Anadarko and Eni in Areas 1 and 4, with plans for a four-train LNG plant underway.
In total, some 15 areas were included in the round, within the offshore Rovuma, Angoche, and Zambezi areas, as well as onshore areas, together covering 74,402sq km.
But, most of the applications have been for a limited number of areas, with stiff competition for some areas.
The round was launched 23 October 2014 and closed, after six months delay, 30 July with applications received for the following offshore blocks:
Angoche basin A5-A
Angoche basin A5-B
Zambezi Delta Z5-C
Zambezi Delta Z5-D
Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos de Mocambique (ENH) will have a minimum 10% interest in all fifth round licenses.
As a non-operator, Namoza Natural Resources also applied for areas R5-A/B/C, Z5-E, and PT5-B/C.
INP will now evaluate the submitted applications on defined criteria which include the Health Safety and Environmental (HSE), the financial strength, technical competence and capability and Economic terms offered to the Mozambican State.
INP anticipates that it will announce the results within the next three months.
Applications were also received for onshore areas:
There were also applications for areas not included in the fifth round from:
According to Deloitte, exploration for hydrocarbons in Mozambique dates back to 1948 and prior to 1971, 54 exploration wells had been drilled, including 10 offshore. No discoveries were made which were deemed commercial at the time and activities ceased during the independence struggle and ensuing civil war.
Recently most interest has focused offshore, with Anadarko and Eni acquiring concessions in the Rovuma basin, off the northern coast in 2006 (offshore Areas land 4 respectively), and making their massive gas discoveries in 2010-2011.