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Mogadishu-based Transitional Federal Government (TFG) prime minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke has said that all contracts, including energy contracts, signed by the semi-autonomous Republic of Puntland,

Somalia
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Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari has surprised many investors by declining to sign into law the embattled Petroleum Industry Governance Bill. Claiming the bill would divert scarce financial resources from state coffers, Buhari in late August struck a potentially lethal blow to petroleum reform. He may also have brought an anticlimactic end to almost two decades of tortuous legislative to and fro over petroleum reform, marked by extensive lobbying and concern from Shell, Eni, ExxonMobil, Total and other international partners.

Nigeria
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Greek company Mytilineos signed an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract with General Electricity Company of Libya (Gecol) for a new dual-fuel power plant in Tobruk to be built by its Metka unit. The agreement was signed in Tripoli on 27 September. One of the most important questions over the realisation of the 650MW open-cycle plant is whether Tripoli-based Gecol will be able to reliably finance and manage a large and expensive infrastructure project in eastern Libya while its authority is being continually challenged by an alternative power company based in the Cyrenaica city of Al-Baida.

Libya
Issue 255 - 31 May 2013

Moves to end flaring off Gabon

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More gas should become available to supply projects in Gabon from efforts to end flaring, although a significant proportion of this feedstock may be committed to projects already planned by international oil companies (IOCs) – including Total’s new 15MW power plant in Port-Gentil, Perenco’s supply of the plant being built by Israel’s Telemenia and Royal Dutch Shell’s experiments with smaller scale liquefaction (see Gabon fertiliser scheme delayed as gas supply proves elusive).

Gabon
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Commentators were stunned by Mouvement du 23 Mars (M23) leader General Bosco Ntaganda’s decision to leave his haunts in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, presenting himself on 18 March at the US embassy in Kigali, where he asked to be transferred to the International Criminal Court in The Hague. For Ntaganda, apparently, the prospect of facing trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity is preferable to continuing his conflict with President Joseph Kabila Kabange’s administration in Kinshasa or facing the wrath of his former Rwandan ally President Paul Kagame. The warlord’s move prompted speculation that an elusive peace deal between the DRC government and M23 might be forthcoming. However, peace with M23 provides no guarantee that DRC’s oil sector can quickly fulfil its promise.

Congo Brazzaville
Free

Despite governance shortfalls and a number of crises, President Filipe Nyusi’s government has reassured investors with its support for transformational LNG schemes, leading towards final investment decisions and financial close in the months to come. This is a major success for an African gas industry where smaller projects seem to be making more impact than the majority of big-ticket schemes. Mozambique’s progress reassured CbI Meetings’ 2-3 May Africa Investment Exchange: Gas event in London that the African industry can deliver world-scale projects.

Tanzania
Issue 359 - 07 December 2017

North Africans look to the south

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The high-profile presence of Morocco’s King Mohammed VI at the 29-30 November African Union-European Union summit in Abidjan – also attended by the Algerian-backed Saharan Arab Democratic Republic, an AU member since 1984 – underlined how far North African political rivalries are shaping pan-African relations. The king’s handshake with Algerian prime minister Ahmed Ouyahia surprised observers, but with the Maghreb’s cold war still ratcheting up, few expect a breakthrough soon.

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The issue of land ownership is a major factor in the Ugandan oil and politics equation. During the grilling of National Resistance Movement grandees in parliament on 12 October, Buliisa MP Stephen Biraahwa Mukitale named a senior agent of the government’s Internal Security Organisation, Major Herbert Asiimwe Muramagi, as one of those accused by locals of attempting to illegally acquire land near the Taitai well in Kigorobya.

Uganda
Issue 205 - 18 March 2011

IOCs face uncertain future

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Colonel Muammar Qadhafi met the ambassadors of Russia, China and India on 13 March, inviting oil companies from their countries to invest in Libya. This a clear threat that companies from countries backing the rebellion will be punished if he regains control. He made a similar proposal to the Russian and Chinese ambassadors in September 2009 after a US State Department official

Libya
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The controversial marketing company Congolaise de Trading was the product of what officials call “a past phase” in Congo-B politics. In 1998, soon after returning to power, President Denis Sassou Nguesso discovered that French oil company Elf (since merged into Total) was fraudulently representing its Congo-B production operations.

Congo Brazzaville
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The sacking of petroleum, energy and renewable energy minister Thierry Tanoh, formally announced on 10 December, was not unexpected. Tanoh had been in conflict with powerful players, notably influential presidential adviser and former minister Adama Toungara, over a planned audit of the sector, further reforms and project developments. The former banker had also clashed with Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, who was lobbying President Alassane Dramane Ouattara to sack the minister.

Côte d'Ivoire
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Attacks by rebel forces in May have come closer to the oilfields in Upper Nile state than at any point in the 18-month conflict. On 16 May, rebel fighters captured the Upper Nile capital Malakal, and on 19 May they took Melut, 200km north of Malakal and just 40km from the main oil-producing hub of Paloich. The opposition claims to have besieged oilfields around Paloich and captured the town of Mangok, the gteway to the Adrar oilfield, one of the largest fields in the area.

South Sudan
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The International Court of Justice has postponed the start of public hearings in a case brought by Somalia in 2014 over its maritime border with Kenya. The hearings, which follow written submissions to the court last year, were due to take place from 9 to 13 September, but on 3 September Kenya asked for a 12-month postponement, citing the need to recruit a new defence team. The hearings will now be held from 4 to 8 November.

Kenya | Somalia
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The South African government suffered a major setback in its efforts to procure nuclear power when the High Court in Cape Town ruled on 26 April that three intergovernmental agreements, two ministerial determinations and all subsequent procurement activity was unlawful and unconstitutional. The decision means that two ministerial determinations – announcements by the energy minister that a certain amount of capacity will be procured from a particular technology – from 2013 and 2016 underpinning the government’s ambitious, and controversial, efforts to procure 9,600MW of nuclear power have been set aside.

South Africa
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Emboldened by President Donald Trump’s election win, Republican lawmakers have started the process of dismantling the bipartisan Cardin-Lugar anti-corruption rule, which requires oil, gas and mining companies publicly listed in the US to publish their payments to governments in countries where they operate. The rule became law in 2010 as part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, but its implementation was held up by legal challenges and it was released by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) only in June 2016 after Oxfam America sued to speed the process up.