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18 Mar 2024

Sonangol: A Competitive Partner for US Investors

Sonangol: A Competitive Partner for US Investors
Angola’s national oil company (NOC) Sonangol has increased its competitiveness and capacity as an operator through a privatization process initiated by the government – set to be complete by 2026. Now, the NOC is actively seeking partners for exploration and production projects, and is inviting US companies to connect with opportunities in Angola. A networking event in Houston on March 19 will foster engagement between US stakeholders and Angolan leaders, including Sonangol.

Hosted by Angola Oil & Gas (AOG) 2024, in collaboration with the National Oil, Gas & Biofuels Agency (ANPG) and the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Petroleum and Gas, the event provides a platform for Sonangol and US investors to explore synergies and forge strategic partnerships for mutual growth.

AOG stands as the largest oil and gas event in Angola, fully supported by key stakeholders including the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Oil and Gas, Sonangol, ANPG, the African Energy Chamber, and the Petroleum Derivatives Regulatory Institute. This event serves as a platform to sign deals and advance Angola’s oil and gas industry. For sponsorship or participation as a delegate, interested parties can contact [email protected].

Sonangol recently qualified as both an operator and a non-operator in the recent bid round for onshore blocks in the Lower Congo and Kwanza Basin during the ANPG’s 2023 onshore licensing round. Noteworthy is Sonangol’s involvement in Block KON 15, where the company secured a substantial 40% participation interest as an operator alongside Afentra as a non-operator with a 45% interest. Interested companies qualified as associates of the national concessionaire have the opportunity to participate with a 15% interest in the block. This offers promising opportunities for U.S. companies to collaborate with Sonangol and Afentra in the development of Block KON 15, providing access to resources, expertise, and investment prospects in Angola’s energy sector.

Sonangol has already formed strategic partnerships with US companies to develop oil and gas resources. In March 2023, the company partnered with US oil and gas major ExxonMobil to enhance exploration in Angola’s Namibe Basin. An MoU was signed for Blocks 30, 44, and 45, facilitated by the ANPG, aiming to increase competitiveness.

Meanwhile, U.S. company Chevron’s Angolan subsidiary CABGOC and Sonangol – alongside global major TotalEnergies and oil and gas company Azule Energy – recently formed the New Gas Consortium to spearhead the development of the Quiluma and Maboqueiro gas fields. The project encompasses the construction of two offshore wellhead platforms off the northwest coast of Angola, an onshore gas processing plant, and a connection to the Angola LNG plant for the marketing of condensates and gas through LNG cargoes. This collaborative effort aims to harness the potential of these fields, with an anticipated production of four billion cubic meters per year by 2026.

Recognizing the need to diversify revenue streams, Sonangol has expanded into renewable energy sectors. In May 2023, the Solenova consortium, comprising Sonangol and Azule Energy, launched the Caraculo Solar Power Station in Namibe, Angola. This facility, housing 46,000 solar panels, marks Angola’s first photovoltaic plant and is operated by the Solenova consortium. Aligned with Angola’s Energy Strategy 2025, the plant aims to produce 500 MW of renewable energy in the next two years.

Furthermore, Sonangol EP and Azule Energy solidified their commitment to advancing decarbonization efforts in Angola by signing an MoU at last year’s AOG conference. This MoU seeks to identify shared interests, establish a collaborative framework, and explore opportunities for renewable energy projects, including solar and wind, as well as low-carbon blue hydrogen initiatives. This diversification not only spearheads electrification in Angola but opens up new investment opportunities for US investors with expertise in these areas.

As Sonangol continues to evolve and expand its operations, US investors are encouraged to explore the myriad opportunities for collaboration and investment in Angola’s dynamic oil and gas sector. Together, Sonangol and US investors can forge strategic partnerships that not only benefit both parties but also contribute to the long-term prosperity and energy security of Angola.

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