Royal Dutch Shell still interested in natural gas in Mozambique

19 October 2012

Royal Dutch Shell is still interested in Mozambique despite the initial setback in buying Irish company Cove Energy, said Andy Brown, the group’s exploration director told Dow Jones Newswires.

At the end of a succession of proposals and counter-proposals Cove Energy was bought by Thai state group PTT Exploration and Production. Brown said that it would not make sense to be part of an auction that would, “basically destroy any future value by demanding an acquisition price that was too high.”

“East Africa will be a very important region for natural gas,” said Brown adding he was convinced that the group would need a partner in Mozambique with the technical capacity to process natural gas and which also had ships and sales tools.

US group Anadarko Petroleum and Italy’s ENI recently announced that natural gas reserves discovered so far in blocks in the Rovuma basin, in northern Mozambique, totalled 130 trillion cubic feet.

Brown’s comments follow news that ENI was open to partnerships in the block where it found estimated natural gas reserves of 70 trillion cubic feet and in which it owns a 70 percent stake.

The director of ENI’s exploration and production department, Claudio Descalzi, said last week in London that Royal Dutch Shell would be an “excellent partner” but added that so far there had been no official talks on the subject. (macauhub)