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Mozambique: Total sets up offshore operations base

FRENCH oil company Total will set up the offshore operations base for the northern Mozambique gas megaproject in Pemba, the provincial capital of Cabo Delgado, the company told the Portuguese news agency Lusa.

Total, which leads the Area 1 – Mozambique LNG consortium “will develop its offshore operations in Pemba.

‘Technip FMC – the main offshore contractor for the project – will share the facilities of the logistics base of Total and the port of Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique (CFM),’ it announced.

In addition to Pemba, the Mozambique LNG project ‘is analysing options to undertake some offshore support operations in the region to optimise part of its logistics and planning chain, including in Mayotte, through the use of existing infrastructure.’

Mayotte is a French Indian Ocean archipelago located in the north of the Mozambique Channel, about 500 kilometres off the coast of Cabo Delgado.

The megaproject of Area 1 will have offshore operations as the 18 wells from which natural gas will be extracted at the bottom of the ocean, as well as the pressure valves and pipes that will lead it for around 40 kilometres to the liquefaction plant on the Afungi peninsula.

Technip FMC leads the consortium in the engineering design, procurement, production and installation of the components to be installed at sea.

Total reaffirmed in statements to Lusa the commitment of the Mozambique LNG project to ‘achieve its local content objectives,’ namely the ‘ambitious plan’ to award ‘$2.5bn in contracts to companies owned by Mozambicans or registered in Mozambique.’

At the same time, the French energy company said that the companies to be contracted also ‘have a key role in this process.

‘Our focus is to ensure that they comply with all legal and contractual obligations and take appropriate measures to support and develop local businesses and workforce,’ while keeping the project progressing “according to schedule and budget,’ the company said.

Expected to cost around €20bn, Total’s gas extraction megaproject is the largest private investment in Africa, supported by several international financial institutions, and foresees the construction of industrial units and a new city between Palma and the Afungi peninsula in Cabo Delgado.

The first export of liquefied gas is planned for 2024.

Total said it was still on schedule despite the insecurity problems in the region which led the company to reduce its staff on the construction site for a month.

At the end of December, rebels who have been terrorising Cabo Delgado province for three years attacked sites five kilometres from the project.

Some of the insurgent incursions have been claimed by the ‘jihadist’ Islamic state group since 2019.

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