"Most expatriates have been repatriated, but business continuity has remained due to ENI’s strong local content programs and our high percentage of local workforce. Just to give you a couple of examples, in Nigeria over 90% of our personnel is made up by locals; in Ghana, where production started just three years ago, in 2017, we are approaching 80% of local personnel."
Can you elaborate on ENI’s new business structure designed to accelerate energy transition?
ENI defined a strategic roadmap towards 2050 that will take our company through the energy transition, defining the evolution of our business in the coming 30 years, and setting ambitious carbon emission reduction goals. The structure of the company has changed, with two new integrated business groups: one is dedicated to natural resources, including the oil and gas portfolio, integration of the gas value chain, and environmental remediation. The other one is focused on energy evolution to create a circular economy, with a strategy to combine hydrocarbon production with power generation and more sustainable fuel.
What exploration progress has ENI made in Angola in the last 12 months?
Last year we made some important discoveries on Block 15/06: Agogo, Kalimba, Afoxé, Ndungo and Agidigbo. We started Agogo’s early production phase in December 2019, only nine months after the initial discovery. We also have the Ndungu discovery, located a few kilometers from Eni’s West Hub Angola, where we de-risk all of our prospects to increase exploration success. Of the over 30 exploration wells ENI has drilled in Angola, we have had a 90% success rate, finding about 5 billion barrels of hydrocarbon equivalent at a current rate of 150,000 bopd of oil.
We have also made progress with Angola’s New Gas Consortium for the country’s first non-associated gas project. ENI as an operator holds a 25.6% stake, with Total, Sonangol, Chevron and BP as partners. This was set up to develop gas resources to increase supply for Angola’s Soyo LNG (ALNG) plant, and promote the consumption for sustainable initiatives. On this note, ENI and Sonangol has created Solenova Ltd, a JV set up to assess and develop renewable energy opportunities in Angola. The JV’s first development will be a 50 MW solar power plant in the South of Angola to replace diesel power, which is in line with Angola’s energy strategy that has a target of 800 MW installed renewable capacity by 2025.
How important is the gas market and development of Nigeria LNG for ENI’s Nigerian operations?
Gas production makes up 75% of ENI’s portfolio in Nigeria. In October 2019, ENI started gas and condensate production from the Obiafu 41 discovery, in the Niger Delta, just three weeks after well completion. The discovery contains approximately 28 billion cubic meters of gas and 60 million barrels of condensate, and the gas from this discovery will largely be channeled to the domestic market in order to feed the power sector. In December 2019, ENI and its partners in Nigeria LNG (NLNG) announced the FID for the expansion project of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant. This brownfield development, which is expected to start-up in 2024, will increase annual production capacity to more than 30 million mt/y from the current 22.5 million mt/y. 4.2 million mt/y of the new LNG will come from one new liquefaction train (Train 7), with the remaining 3.4 million mt/y coming from the debottlenecking of existing trains. From the export point of view, ENI has signed a long term contract for the purchase of 1.5 million mt/y of LNG with NLNG.
What milestones have been achieved at ENI’s projects in Ghana and Congo in 2020?
Our flagship OCTP project in Ghana is producing 44,000 bopd oil, and gas production from this field is also increasing. Ghana’s gas consumption trebled by the end of 2019, to 150 million mt/y and has increased to 160 million mt/y in H1 2020.
In Congo, we completed the necessary work for the start-up of the 3rd turbine, which increased the electrical generation capacity at the Congo power station (20% owned by ENI) by 170 MW, in January 2020. Also, in March 2020, we started Néné Marine Ph 2B, one of Eni’s three main start-ups in 2020, which will contribute to Néné production with additional 13 kopd.
Can you provide an update on ENI’s activities in Mozambique at the Coral South and Rovuma projects?
The Rovuma LNG project, which will include two LNG trains of 7.6 million mt/y each, is progressing. Within this project, ENI will operator the offshore part, which comprises 24 subsea wells. At the moment we are optimizing the development plan to create synergies with Area 1. The FID was expected by the end of 2020, but has been postponed. The updated project and a new FID date will be selected based on the result of the optimization phase.
The construction of the CoralSul FLNG for the Coral South project is progressing steadily, and was 70% complete in March 2020. By Q4 2021, the FLNG will be ready to leave the port, with planned start-up in H1 2022 and first cargo by H2 2022. At 3.4 million mt/y LNG over a period of 25 years, it is a significant project and the first one to put in production Mozambique’s gas resources.
How does ENI contribute to local content development in Africa?
The importance and priority of local content is in ENI’s DNA, in all aspects, including providing power, domestic gas and training the local workforce. For example, in Mozambique for the Rovuma Basin gas fields, ENI created the 200 program, an initiative to train 200 Mozambican graduates in economics, engineering, biology and chemistry. From the supply chain side, we engage local suppliers to participate in the procurement process in all the African countries we operate in. This is particularly important in this moment with travel bans and the interruption to international logistics due to the pandemic. Most expatriates have been repatriated, but business continuity has remained due to ENI’s strong local content programs and our high percentage of local workforce. Just to give you a couple of examples, in Nigeria over 90% of our personnel is made up by locals; in Ghana, where production started just three years ago, in 2017, we are approaching 80% of local personnel.