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Issue 328 - 22 July 2016

Angola: MoU on hydrokinetic energy

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The Ministry of Energy and Water has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Abu Dhabi industrial group Privinvest to introduce hydrokinetic power generation over the next decade. Privinvest affiliates CMN and Hydroquest design and manufacture turbines for use in rivers and the sea, harnessing energy from tides and flowing water.State power utility Empresa Pública de Produção de Electricidade (Prodel) and Privinvest have agreed to set up a joint venture company, which will initially manufacture and operate hydrokinetic energy schemes in Angola. The workload will be split between Angola and France.

Angola
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New Sonangol chief executive Isabel dos Santos has suspended all talks relating to the sale of assets belonging to the Angolan state oil firm and stripped its legal department of most of its powers.A brief statement posted on Sonangol’s website following a 27 June meeting of the new board said the evaluation, negotiation and sale of any assets held by Sonangol and its subsidiaries had been suspended with immediate effect.

Angola
Free

Sonangol has declared Cobalt Energy International’s Zalophus-1 well on Block 20 to be a commercial gas discovery. Sonangol said in a statement the Kwanza Basin well was drilled to a depth of 5,210 metres in 1,830 metres of water and encountered a 44-metre hydrocarbon column in the pre-salt. It estimated resources at 2.8tcf of gas, as well as liquids. A deal announced in August 2015 for Cobalt to sell blocks 20 and 21 to Sonangol for $1.75bn has yet to be finalised.

Angola
Issue 327 - 08 July 2016

Luanda turns down IMF funding

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Angola has opted not to pursue an extended fund facility (EFF) from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that would have offered significant funding alongside tough conditionality, and will instead seek only technical assistance. “The president of the republic has informed the IMF of the government’s decision to continue their policy dialogue with the fund only within the context of the Article IV consultation and not through discussion concerning an EFF supported programme,” IMF spokesman Gerry Rice told a news briefing in Washington on 28 June.

Angola
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Angola LNG (ALNG) said on 6 June that production has resumed at its liquefaction plant at Soyo and the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo since its April 2014 shutdown has been loaded. The cargo is being sold by an international tender. Reuters quoted traders as saying the cargo was loaded between 3 and 5 June on board the Sonangol Sambizanga tanker and bid submissions are due on the morning of 13 June.

Angola
Subscriber

President José Eduardo dos Santos on 2 June appointed a new board of directors for state oil company Sonangol. The new team will be headed by his daughter Isabel, a businesswoman who led the commission that formulated proposals for Sonangol’s restructuring. The new board will implement the reforms recommended by the commission, outlined in two presidential decrees on 26 May.

Angola
Subscriber

Angola’s opposition União Nacional para a Independência Total de Angola (Unita) has repeated its accusations that the government has diverted billions of dollars in oil revenues. While bankers are sceptical about the sums cited by the party, the accusations are embarrassing as the government prepares for negotiations on a bailout programme from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Angola
Subscriber

As Cobalt International Energy prepares to exit Angola, it has announced a condensate and gas discovery with the Zalophus #1 pre-salt exploration well in Block 20. This is Cobalt’s sixth pre-salt discovery offshore Angola and its third discovery on Block 20. The Petroserv Catarina drilling rig is completing drilling operations on the Golfinho #1 pre-salt exploration well, which is Cobalt’s final exploration well commitment on Block 20.

Angola
Issue 323 - 13 May 2016

Angola: Progress on Lauca dam

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Engineering work for the 2,069MW Lauca hydropower dam on the Kwanza River is 77% complete and the electromechanical works are 46% complete, the state Médio Kwanza Development Office (Gamek) said at the end of April. The main contractor, Odebrecht Infraestructura, said in late 2015 that the first two of the six 334MW turbines should be installed in July 2017 by Andritz Hydro, with turbine tests following in August and at least two turbines operational by end-2017. The aim is to fill the 188km² reservoir during the first four months of 2017.

Angola
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Chevron affiliate Cabinda Gulf Oil Company Limited (Cabgoc) has given Maersk Drilling a notice of early contract termination for the ultra-deepwater semi-submersible Maersk Deliverer. The contract was due to end in December 2016, and Maersk Drilling is entitled to receive compensation for the remaining part of the contract. “It is a reminder of the very challenging conditions in the offshore rig market with oil companies restraining activities and capital spending in response to the lower oil price environment.

Angola
Free

Sonangol on 12 April made declarations of commerciality for three gas discoveries: the Lira well on Block 15/14 in the Lower Congo Basin, and Katambi-1 on Block 24/11 and Lontra-1 in Block 20/15, both in the Kwanza Basin.A presidential decree in June 2014 granted Sonangol the mining rights to develop and produce hydrocarbon gases in the Block 15/14 Lira concession area. Sonangol said that, in accordance with the Block 15/06 production-sharing agreement, it would start talks with Block 15/06 operator Eni on options for exploiting, developing and monetising the natural gas resource.

Angola
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Denmark’s Maersk Oil has announced plans to close its Houston office and reduce its Luanda team to try to reduce capital expenditure and improve returns from the unsanctioned Chissonga project. Maersk said options included a future project developed jointly with other hydrocarbon discoveries in the same region. “Chissonga, like many deep-water projects in our industry, remains economically challenged in the current market environment. Maersk Oil remains committed to the Chissonga project and we have evaluated multiple options to commercialise these resources in the best interests of our partners and the Angolan authorities.

Angola
Subscriber

Angola has sought help from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to help reform its economy, discussing a three-year programme to combat the effects of prolonged low oil prices. An IMF programme will mean Angola will have to be more transparent in its finances, and implement the reforms that have been talked of for years with little result. Discussions are expected to start at the IMF and World Bank spring meetings in Washington on 15-17 April.

Angola
Issue 320 - 24 March 2016

DRC pulls out of JDZ deal

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Democratic Republic of Congo’s new hydrocarbons minister has rejected an agreement on the offshore Joint Development Zone (JDZ) with Angola and demanded compensation after an Angolan presidential decree in December transferred two fields out of the joint zone into Chevron’s Block 14. On 16 February, André Ngoi Mukena Lusa Diese sent a letter to his Angolan counterpart, José Maria Botelho de Vasconcelos, rejecting the two countries’ 30 July 2007 agreement for the exploration and production of hydrocarbons in the JDZ, a 10km-wide corridor across Angolan offshore blocks 1, 14, 15 and 31 (AE 264/17).

DR Congo | Angola
Issue 320 - 24 March 2016

Angola: Technip award for Block 17

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Total E&P Angola has given Technip Angola Engenharia Limitada, a joint venture between Technip and Sonangol, a three-year engineering services contract for the Girassol, Pazflor, Dalia and CLOV floating production, storage and offloading units on Block 17. The scope of work is expected to include engineering, technical assistance, management, supervision and coordination.

Angola