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Italian major Eni has blazed a trail back into Libya that numerous international oil companies are now following. Even if the risks on re-entry remain severe at many levels, the lure of unprecedented, if controversial, opportunities may be impossible to resist.

Libya
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Equinor’s proposed sale of its Nigerian operations to a local buyer adds to a growing trend for IOCs to withdraw from the  upstream sector, allowing domestic players to step in, even if access to finance and other obstacles may still need to be overcome, writes James Gavin.

Nigeria
Free

The final COP28 communiqué included – for the first time – a commitment to eventually phase out fossil fuels, going beyond previous declarations that focused on coal. However, there are few signs that Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) members and their Opec+ allies, led by Russia, have any intention of allowing their core source of revenues to disappear anytime soon. So what can we learn from recent statements by oil producers – including Opec+’s quota commitments at a meeting on 30 November – and from leaks and comments made during COP28?

Angola | Nigeria | Libya | Congo Brazzaville | Algeria
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The COP28 climate talks in Dubai ended on a more positive note than many had thought possible, but for all the talk of eventually phasing out fossil fuels, multi-billions of dollars-worth of climate finance and operationalising the long-awaited Loss and Damage Fund, the crowds who descended on Dubai left with much to do and huge financial shortfalls to make up.

Senegal | South Africa
Issue 497 - 17 December 2023

Libya’s NOC joins climate bandwagon

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Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) was not the only national oil giant to lever its agenda into the climate discussions at COP28 in Dubai. Among the other interlopers was National Oil Corporation (NOC), whose chairman Farhat Bengdara told journalists that Libya will increase oil production from 1.2m b/d now to 2m b/d in the next three to five years.

Libya
Issue 497 - 17 December 2023

COP28: Limited support for African JETPs

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To keep South Africa’s faltering flagship Just Energy Transition Programme (JETP) on the road, the African Development Bank (AfDB) and United Kingdom government approved a $1bn guarantee to allow the bank to increase its lending capacity to the programme.

South Africa
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A Franco-Japanese consortium of TotalEnergies, EDF and Sumitomo Corporation has signed joint development and framework agreements for Mozambique’s long-delayed 1.5GW Mphanda Nkuwa hydroelectric power plant.

Mozambique
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Project bulletin

Hyphen Hydrogen Energy and Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) have agreed a finance package for engineering, environmental and socio-economic development work on Hyphen’s multi-billion-dollar green hydrogen (GH2) project. The agreement was signed at the COP28 summit in Dubai.

Namibia
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The South African government’s decision to approve state-owned PetroSA’s selection of an affiliate of Russia’s sanctioned Gazprombank as the preferred investment partner for the Mossel Bay GTL plant has sparked controversy.

South Africa
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The announcement that a unit of United Arab Emirates national security adviser Sheikh Tahnoun Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan’s International Holding Company was winning bidder for a stake in loss-making Mopani Copper Mines points to the emergence of ‘middle powers’ in strategic African resources plays and a hoped-for revival in Zambia’s mining ambitions.

Zambia
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Danish investor and developer Frontier Energy has announced a co-investment with three European development finance agencies for the 50MWp, under-construction, multi-site Planet Solar independent power producer (IPP) plant. Planet Solar will be Sierra Leone’s first large grid-connected IPP, the funders said.

Sierra Leone
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UAE-based players have used COP28 to commit – and recommit – to projects that could supply over 12GW of renewables capacity across Africa. Emiratis argue this displays a willingness to push projects forward and shoulder risk, while others have failed to deliver – and if critics complain they are also prominent in the oil lobby, Abu Dhabi can counter that the UAE has assumed a leading role in enabling Africa’s energy transition.

Kenya | Mozambique | Egypt | DR Congo | Angola | Mauritania | Uganda | Djibouti | Zambia | Congo Brazzaville | Senegal | Côte d'Ivoire
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Nearly all of South Africa’s climate finance is being provided from local sources, while inflows from international funders remain very low, a new Presidential Climate Commission report shows. While more funds have flowed into Africa’s largest greenhouse gas emitter in recent years, these resources remain insufficient compared to the extent of the actions required to adapt and mitigate the impacts of climate change.

South Africa
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Rio Tinto said it expects first production from the Simandou iron ore development in 2025 and that regulatory approvals are “imminent”, as it revealed details of the $11.6bn costs its Simfer joint venture has committed to develop blocks 3 and 4 and the joint Simandou infrastructure development. The mining major also confirmed what markets knew: that China’s Baowu had taken a big stake in Simandou blocks 1 and 2.

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The UAE has had to deal with some unwelcome scrutiny of its energy strategy after the COP28 climate conference opened in Dubai on 30 November. Observers had long warned that holding such an event in the world’s seventh largest oil producer was likely to lead to friction and so it has proved. African Energy’s sister publication Gulf States Newsletter (GSN) gives a view from the region, including a roundup of the big pledges made in a ‘transactional’ first week.