Non-Core Service Providers Urged To Take Advantage Of Gas Projects In Africa

Atuabo PixCiting an abundance of planned or developing gas-related energy projects in sub-Saharan Africa,  Africa  Project  Access Managing Director  Paul Runge  said on Tuesday that there was a “huge” opportunity for  logistics  and ancillary  service  companies to take advantage of the often-stranded nature of  gas  developments, which provided “ripples” of opportunity.

Speaking at the  Gas  Africa  conference in Johannesburg, Mr. Runge, whose company advised on energy projects on the continent, said the provision of logistics to isolated gas developments was increasingly becoming a key issue in the industry.

A lack of accommodation, catering and other noncore services had become a priority issue for gas developers and presented knock-on opportunities for companies specialising in these fields.

“We’re looking at the benefits created by the ripple effect of the pebble — which is the gas find — rather than the opportunity of the pebble itself.

“We’ve never seen a  project  flow  (in the region) such as we are seeing today. Yes, there are cynics, but things are happening. For example, if you think you still have an [early mover advantage] in the Pemba (gas region, in Mozambique), you’re wrong,” he commented.

Elaborating on the various  gas  projects currently under development across Southern and Eastern Africa, Runge referred to several regional  gas “hotspots”, citing Pemba and Palma,  in  northern Mozambique; Pande and Temane, in central Mozambique; Mtwara, in southern Tanzania; the Lamu basin, in Kenya; Kudu, in Namibia; Cabinda, in Angola; Jubilee, in Ghana; and Banda, in Mauritania.

Significant gas-related  infrastructure  projects within these regions included the over-$1-billion Pemba  port construction project, the Palma floating facility project, the Pemba and Palma industrial park developments, the Mtwara port expansion project, the San Pedro port project, in Côte d’Ivoire, and the Takoradi  port development, in Ghana.

“Logistics and finance requirements permeate all of these projects,” said Runge, adding that liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants in sub-Saharan Africa also offered downstream opportunities.

Listing LNG plants in the region, he referenced the Bioko Island plant, in Equatorial Guinea; Bonny, in  Nigeria; Brass, also in Nigeria; Souo, in Angola; the Afungi Peninsula plant, in Mozambique; and the planed Mtwara plant as offering opportunities for ancillary service providers.

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