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Nigeria: French oil giant, TotalEnergies, joins train to sell stake in onshore oil production

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The wave of multinationals leaving African countries has continued as French oil major TotalEnergies has announced it will put up for sale its minority stake in a Nigerian oil joint venture.

TotalEnergies Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Pouyanne, was quoted by international media – Bloomberg that “disruption of local communities are sources of great concern in the country,”

The firm attributed its plans to join the bandwagon of other oil majors and sell its stake in an onshore oil production joint venture in Nigeria to the disruption of local communities which has become a source of great concern.

Last year, Royal Dutch Shell, entered talks with the Nigerian government to sell the Anglo-Dutch company’s stake in onshore oilfields, CEO Ben van Beurden.

In February, Seplat Energy Plc, unveiled plans to acquire the entire share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU) from Exxon Mobil Corporation Delaware (USA Incorporated). That includes all of Exxon’s entire shallow water assets in the Niger Delta.

The French energy giant will look to offload its 10 percent interest in a firm that holds 20 onshore and shallow water permits in the West African country, Mr. Pouyanne said.

Shell Plc, the operator of the licenses, is already considering bids from four local firms for its 30 percent shareholding in the company,” he said.

African countries have experienced departures of multinationals. Last month, ride-hailing company, Uber, suspended its services in Tanzania as a result of regulations that are not business-friendly which has made its operation in the East African country. Standard Chartered Bank also announced it has ended its operations in some African countries earlier this month.

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Dangote Refinery in crude supply negotiations with Libya

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To get around issues with local supply, Nigeria’s Dangote refinery is in negotiations with Libya to get crude for the 650,000 barrels per day (bpd) plant. A senior official stated that the refinery would also look for Angolan oil.

The $20 billion refinery, the largest in Africa, was constructed on the outskirts of Lagos by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote. Its purpose is to eliminate Nigeria’s reliance on imported fuels due to inadequate refining capacity.

Since starting operations in January, Dangote has not been able to obtain sufficient crude supplies from Nigeria, the largest oil producer in Africa, beset by poor investment, theft, and pipeline vandalism. Dangote has had to buy petroleum from the US and Brazil, among other places.

“We are talking to Libya about importing crude,” Dangote refinery senior executive Devakumar Edwin told Reuters late on Saturday. “We will talk to Angola and some other African countries.”

He added that foreign traders and oil corporations were among the largest purchasers of Dangote’s gasoil, which was mostly being exported, but he would not elaborate on the specifics of the discussions.

“The biggest off-takers are the two big traders Trafigura and Vitol and BP and, to some extent, even TotalEnergies. But all of them are saying they are taking it to offshore,” Edwin said.

According to traders and shipping statistics, Dangote is displacing European refiners in the gasoil market by increasing exports to West Africa.

By 2050, the nuclear sector wants to treble its capacity.

According to Edwin, Dangote’s oil trading division was running, employing people in Lagos and London to assist with product sales and supply management. The intended trading arm was initially revealed by Reuters in March.

In a recent dispute with Dangote, Nigeria’s upstream authority claimed that the fuel’s sulphur concentration exceeded the mandated 200 parts per million (ppm). Rejecting that claim, Aliko Dangote stated that sulfur levels had been higher at the beginning of production but have since dropped to 88 parts per million (ppm) and would reach 10 parts per million in early August as output increases.

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As inflation slows down, Angolan central bank maintains stable interest rate

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The central bank of Angola maintained its main interest rate at 19.5% on Friday, noting a possible short-term improvement in the supply of necessities and a possible decrease in inflation.

To contain growing inflation, which has reached 30%, the Bank of Angola hiked its main rate by 50 basis points at its most recent monetary policy meeting in May after raising it by 100 basis points in March.

The annual inflation rate increased last month, from 30.16% in May to 31.00%, although at a slower rate than in prior months.

“The decision (on Friday) was motivated by the prospect of a slowdown in the rate of price growth and an improvement in the supply of essential goods,” said Central Bank Governor Manuel Tiago Dias.

“If current conditions prevail from August onwards, we predict a slowdown in year-on-year inflation,” Tiago Dias added.

Since the middle of last year, inflation has been increasing in the nation that produces oil in Africa.

By September, the central bank will make its next move on monetary policy.

 

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