Africa’s new and existing oil and gas producers have redirected a focus on improving regional trade as well as international energy exports, leading to the construction of large-scale, cross-border pipelines. These pipelines, both under construction and in the planning stages, will be critical for the continent as it moves to become a global hydrocarbon supplier in 2022 and beyond.
Trans-Saharan Gas Pipeline: 4,128 km
Carrying 30 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas annually, the 4,128 km Trans-Saharan Gas Pipeline (TSGP) will link Warri in Nigeria to Hassi R’Mel in Algeria via Niger, connecting Nigeria’s resource rich fields to regional African markets as well European markets via the Mediterranean coast. With the Declaration of Niamey signed during the third edition of the Economic Communities of West African States Mining and Petroleum Forum in Niamey on February 16, 2022, essentially kickstarting construction resumption of the pipeline, Europe will be able to tap into three African country’s resources.
The African Renaissance Pipeline Project: 2,600 km
Linking Mozambique’s gas-rich Rovuma basin to Springs in the Gauteng province of South Africa, the planned 2,600 km African Renaissance Pipeline project (ARP) will be instrumental in meeting regional gas demand. Signed in 2016, the $6 billion project will have an annual capacity of 18 bcm and represents a joint venture between Mozambican oil and gas company Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos, Profin Consulting Sociedade Anónima, South Africa’s SacOil Holdings and the Chinese international pipeline construction company China Petroleum Pipeline Bureau. The ARP is set to reach completion in 2025 for the Mozambican side and 2026 for the South African side.
Transmed Gas Pipeline: 2,475 km
The Trans-Mediterranean (Transmed) pipeline is a 2,475 km natural gas pipeline carrying gas from Algeria to Italy via Tunisia and Sicily. With construction commencing in 1978 and commissioning in 1983, the Transmed pipeline represents the longest international gas pipeline system in the world. The pipeline has a capacity of 110 million cubic meters (mcm) per day but only transports 60 mcm. However, in response to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, Italian energy company, Eni, and Algerian state-owned oil company, Sonatrach, have agreed to increase gas flow by an additional 9 bcm per year by 2023-2024, increasing supply to Russian-energy dependent Italy. Strategically positioned, the pipeline serves both north Africa’s and Europe’s natural gas needs.
East African Crude Oil Pipeline: 1,443 km
The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) forms part of the larger Lake Albert Development project developed by TotalEnergies and the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC). Linking the Tilenga and Kingfisher oilfields to the Tanzanian port of Tanga, the 1,443 km pipeline enables the export of crude oil to international markets. Shareholders in the EACOP include TotalEnergies (62%), the Uganda National Oil Company (15%), the Tanzania Petroleum Corporation (15%) and CNOOC (8%). With the final investment decision for the entire development made in February 2022, the $10 billion project is on track to start producing in 2025.
Ajaokuta–Kaduna–Kano Gas Pipeline: 614 km
The Ajaokuta–Kaduna–Kano (AKK) pipeline is a proposed 614 km pipeline transporting natural gas from Ajaokuta in central Nigeria to Kano in northern Nigeria. The AKK pipeline is expected to transport 3,500 million cubic feet per day, and forms part of the first phase of the 1,300 km Trans-Nigeria Gas Pipeline Project, which forms part of the even larger TSGP. Developed by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the pipeline will be implemented based on a build and transfer public private partnership model. The Bank of China and Sinosure are the main foreign funders with the support of the Nigerian Fidelity Bank. With commissioning scheduled for 2022, the AKK pipeline will maintain a steady natural gas supply within Nigeria.