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The MSGBC energy sector is undergoing a period of transformation on the back of large-scale developments across the oil, gas and renewable sectors.
Key drivers of this transformation are the region’s national oil companies (NOCs), serving as the gatekeepers for investment, development and policy design across their respective regions.
As energy expansion gathers steam and regional and international player interest grows, here is everything you need to know about the five NOCs driving progress.
Senegal’s NOC, Petrosen, was founded in 1981 and is 99% state-owned. The mandate of Petrosen includes research, exploration, refining, storage, marketing, distribution and associated industrial activities in the oil, gas and energy sectors, signing joint operating agreements with all international firms entering into national E&P activities with a minimum 10% stake. This includes the $4.8 billion transnational Greater Tortue Ahmeyim (GTA) development from bp as well as Woodside’s $4.6 billion Sangomar deep water oil development. January last year saw Petrosen launch a key licensing round with a dozen offshore blocks up for bid. Petrosen also supports government goals outlined under the Petroleum Code and Emergent Senegal Plan including achieving universal access to affordable, reliable electricity for the nation by 2025 and a 50% local content ratio in the national industry by 2030. Petrosen is a major partner of Energy Capital & Power (ECP) in the upcoming MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power Conference & Exhibition 2022.
The Société Mauritanienne des Hydrocarbures (SMHPM) oversees the operation and development of the Mauritanian energy sector, established in 2004 along with its first works on the Chinguetti Oil Field. The group pursues a balanced approach to energy spanning oil, gas, green hydrogen and renewables, with 28 offshore blocks currently open for bids, 40 GW in green hydrogen MoUs signed last year alone and the highest volume of renewable energy per capita in the region. The blocks active in the country are operated by bp, Cairn, Shell and TotalEnergies, including GTA with 15 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of gas, BirAllah at 13 tcf and Banda at a further 1 tcf. SMHPM is also a strong supporter of MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power as a platform to promote the nation’s unmatched energy opportunities.
Established in 1983, the Gambia National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) is coordinating the country’s energy industry surge. With two onshore and six offshore blocks currently active – licensed to Petronor, FAR, bp, Kosmos and Tullow Oil – GNPC holds a minimum 10% in production and exploration activities – notably 13.64% in the Jubilee field and 15% in the TEN field as the state authority on domestic oil and gas development. GNPC is responsible for local content, pioneering a regionally leading system of local content accountability targets in Petroleum Exploration, Development and Production Licenses refreshed this year. The organization also partners with ECP for the MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power Conference.
Formed in 1986, Petroguin leads another early-phase energy sector in Guinea-Bissau. The country’s largely unexplored oil and gas reserves have seen a recent uptick in foreign investor interest enabled by the 2014 New Petroleum Code. Thus, Petroguin holds prospecting and production stakes in domestic activities carried out by China’s CNOOC, Sweden’s Svenska Petroleum Exploration, and Australia’s FAR LTD. Guinea-Bissau holds a perhaps uniquely close tie with Senegal as its energy sector understudy, aided by the works of the Agency for Cooperation between Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, reporting directly to the countries’ respective Presidents. Currently, Petroguin is seeking a geophysics contractor to undertake comprehensive seismic studies of its active fields for resource assessments and strategic planning of future extraction operations.
Guinea-Conakry’s Société Nationale des Pétroles (SONAP) is the product of a merger between the country’s prior NOC, the National Petroleum Office (ONAP) formed in 2015, and its National Petroleum Import Company in December last year. SONAP acts as an enforcer of the nation’s revised Petroleum Code passed in December 2014. The group’s current drive is towards the exploration of reserves with limited works conducted in 2012 by U.S. firm, Hyperdynamics and subsequently in 2018 by TotalEnergies. This intent is reflected in the country’s Natural Resource Charter’s Precept 3, pursuant to which bidding terms are being developed for the licensing tender of 22 unexplored blocks in the nation. March last year witnessed the 450 MW Souapiti plant, one of west Africa’s largest hydroelectric developments come online in the country, to the tune of $2 billion. Furthermore, a key LNG import terminal is also under construction in the Kamsar coastal region to service a reformed bauxite mining sector’s energy needs for high-value refining operations. SONAP’s Director General, Amadou Doumbouya will be addressing the 1,000 assembled high-level delegates at the MSGBC Conference in 2022.
Following on from last year’s hit pilot event, the MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power Conference returns for its second edition in Dakar in September this year. Among a two-day program will be the much-anticipated west African NOC Forum, uniting the heads of the region’s NOCs to discuss items such as public-private partnerships; balancing foreign investment and local content; energy transition policies and more. Early confirmed speakers include Yaya Barrow and Kwame Baah-Nuakoh, Managing Director and General Manager of Sustainability and Stakeholder Relations, respectively, at the GNPC, along with Tourad Abdel Baghi, Director-General at SMHPM. Others are expected from Senegal’s Petrosen, Guinea-Bissau’s Petroguin and Guinea-Conakry’s SONAP in this stand-out event, following H.E. Macky Sall’s opening Presidential address.
To join this west African energy forum and unlock unprecedented networking access, strategic insight and investment opportunities, register at https://msgbcoilgasandpower.com/.