The discovery of Mozambique`s natural gas reserves in the Rovuma Basin since 2010 could see this Southern African country become the third largest producer of liquefied gas (LNG) with the first and second spots being occupied by Australia and Qatar.
The discovered natural gas reserves indicate at least 160 to 200 trillion cubic feet of gas with more reserves still being discovered. The amount of gas that has already been discovered could see Mozambique producing natural gas for the next 100 years.
Mozambique is currently in huge debt and lack of adequate energy has been a haunting factor which has hindered its growth and affected its economy. The gas reserves presence an opportunity for Mozambique to boost its economy and transform itself from a developing country to middle-income country within a decade.
The discovery of the liquefied gas is also expected to create jobs and reduce the unemployment rate. In 2016 alone the Italian group ENI`s operations in the Rovuma basin is said to have created more than 820 jobs for Mozambican nationals and with the coming in of other players more jobs are expected to be created.
After nearly half a decade of almost doing nothing to unlock the wealth from the discovered gas reserves, the Southern African nation of Mozambique has started to move towards attracting investors to develop their gas fields. Other major players who are already involved in producing gas in Mozambique include Sasol Ltd, Anadarko and Italian group ENI.
Mozambique is also looking to export gas to other countries within and outside the continent. In a statement the Mozambican minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Leticia Klemens said they hope to persuade Japan to buy their gas.
“…we have to present our gas and coal energy resources. We regard Japan as a major client. We need Japan to buy our gas”, said Klemens.
Mozambique needs to act more swiftly and in the process ensure that the country is reaping full benefits from its resources as the gas reserves have offered it a chance grow economically.