Qatar’s Investment Offshore Congo, Perhaps More Strategic than Tactical

total congo moho nord offshore
Image: Total, click for larger

Qatar Petroleum International (QPI) and Total announced a landmark partnership agreement with Total E&P Congo today representing QPI’s first international investment in an offshore oil and gas project.

The agreement involves a 15% share capital increase in Total E&P Congo by QPI however, the value of this investment was not disclosed.  In a statement on their website, Total notes that his investment will be directed toward the development of the Moho Nord project.

This investment reflects a strategic move toward expanding QPI’s international presence, particularly with regard to Africa according to a statement by QPI Chairman and Minister of Energy and Industry, Dr. Mohammed Bin Saleh Al Sada.

Although the Moho Nord field is primarily focused on oil production with an anticipated production rate of 140,000 boe/d by 2017, Qatar’s presence in the Congo could reflect a more strategic move with respect to Congo’s gas reserves.

According to the Oil & Gas Journal, Congo holds one-fifth of the proven gas reserves in sub-Saharan Africa.  A recent EIA report notes that 334 billion cubic feet (bcf) of gas were produced by the Congo in 2011, yet only 15 percent (51 Bcf) was marketed.  The majority of the natural gas, 68 percent (228 Bcf), was reinjected to boost oil production and the remaining 17 percent (55 Bcf) was flared or vented.

congo natural gas production