Mozambican Oil and Gas company ENH denies sale of stakes in oil blocks

11 June 2013

Mozambican state company Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (ENH) has denied it plans to sell stakes it owns in natural gas prospecting and exploration blocks in Mozambique, the chairman of the company said Monday.

Nelson Ocuane said, however, that the company had been under pressure from some companies interested in buying part of the stakes ENH owns in Areas 1 and 4 of the Rovuma basin, where there have been large natural gas discoveries.

“The company has no intention of giving up any of those stakes, not only because it has no mandate to do that but because its mission is to make the most of them and in 20 or 30 years to become an oil operator,” said Ocuane, cited by daily newspaper Notícias.

Ocuane was responding to reports last week that ENH may sell off part of the 15 percent stakes it owns in the Area 1 block of the Rovuma basin, operated by US company Anadarko Petroleum. Reportedly interested companies included Indian groups Oil and Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC) and Oil India Ltd. (OIL) as well as Chinese groups in the sector.

“What we have told the companies that have contacted us is that if they want to be involved in development of natural gas in the Rovuma basin this can be achieved through the stake that are put up for sale, such as what happened when Cove Energy sold of its stake in the Rovuma basin,” noted Ocuane.

The chairman of ENH also said that the company had launched a tender to hire a financial and legal consultant to structure the company’s stake in several oil and gas projects, an initiative funded by the World Bank. (macauhub)