Mozambican government to issue new oil and gas prospecting licenses

18 August 2014

The approval of the propose Oil Law will allow the Mozambican government to issue new prospecting licenses to companies that will have to partner state oil and gas company Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (ENH), said the country Natural Resources minister.

According to the new legislation, which will come into force at the end of the year, foreign companies interested in oil and natural gas prospecting licenses will have to partner the Mozambican state company and 25 percent of all the gas they produce will be sold on the domestic market.

Minister Esperança Bias said that the previous law, which dated from 2001, needed to be updated to reflect changes seen since then and told financial news agency Reuters, “we had said there would be no more licenses granted until the law was updated.”

Under the terms of the reviewed law subsidiaries set up in Mozambique by foreign companies interested in prospecting for oil and gas in the country will have to request a listing on the Mozambican Stock Exchange.

Cited by the Mozambican press, Arsénio Mabote, chairman of the National oil Institute, said there were many companies interested in oil and gas prospecting in the sea off Mozambique, but provided no details about these companies.

To date, deposits of around 180 billion cubic feet of natural gas have been found in the Rovuma basin in northern Mozambique. (macauhub/MZ)