Eni gains green light for Coral development offshore Mozambique

Italian oil company Eni has announced the approval of the Plan of Development for the Coral discovery, offshore Mozambique.

The confirmation from the Italian company arrived only a day after the company’s Chief Exploration Officer, Luca Bertelli, said during the IHS CERAWeek conference in Houston that Eni was expecting to receive a Plan for Development and Operation approval in Mozambique within days, or if not days, then very soon.

According to Eni, the approval has been granted by the Government of Mozambique’s Council of Ministers. The approval relates to the first phase of development of 5 trillion cubic feet of gas in the Coral discovery, located in the Area 4 permit. The discovery is located in water more than 2000 meters deep and approximately 80 kilometers offshore of the Palma bay in the northern province of Cabo Delgado.

The giant discovery, made in May 2012 and outlined in 2013, proved the existence of a high quality field of Eocenic age with excellent productivity. It is estimated to contain 15 trillion cubic feet of gas in place, wholly located in Area 4.

The Plan of Development, the very first one to be approved in the Rovuma Basin, foresees the drilling and completion of 6 subsea wells and the construction and installation of a technologically advanced Floating LNG facility, the capacity of which will be around 3.4 MTPA.

The project is also the first in the Rovuma Basin to be granted the Environmental License, in September 2015, at the end of a thorough process involving local communities and national authorities, Eni said. It was the result of an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Study.

“Today’s approval of the Coral Plan of Development is a historical milestone for the development of our discovery of 85 TCF of gas in the Rovuma Basin. It is a fundamental step to progress toward the Final Investment Decision of our project which envisages the installation of the first Floating LNG facility in Africa and one of the first in the world. We are proud of Eni’s partnership with Mozambique, a key country in the company’s strategies,” Eni CEO, Claudio Descalzi, said.

This decision is running a bit late as Eni CEO said during last year’s IHS CERAWeek conference that the final investment decision for the FLNG unit to be used for development of one of Eni’s gas discoveries in the country’s deep waters was expected in 2015.

In addition, Eni and its partners are pursuing the development of important gas reserve base of the Mamba Discovery, which allowed in December 2015 the achievement of a unitization agreement with Area 1.

Eni is the operator of Area 4 with a 50% indirect interest, owned through Eni East Africa (EEA), which holds a 70% stake of Area 4. The other Concessionaires are Galp Energia, KOGAS and Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (ENH) with a 10% stake each. CNPC owns a 20% indirect interest in Area 4 through Eni East Africa.

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