The official visit by the President of the Republic, Philip Nyusi, to the Kingdom of the Netherlands is dominated by an eminently economic agenda. One of the great gains that Filipe Nyusi is expected to bring back to Mozambique is the almost sealed commitment with Shell to build a natural gas refinery in Palma for the production of liquid fuels, particularly diesel.
According to the PCA of Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos, Omar Mithá, that oil company will invest more than 7 billion meticais to operate the project, ie “if we did not count the projects of ENI and Anadarko, it would be the second largest project of Mozambique after Mozal and would be seven times more than Mozal, “said Omar Mithá, who assured that ENH will enter as a shareholder in the project. Mithá has no doubts about the economic impact that it will have in Mozambique: “Just for the production it will do, it can supply one million cars a week and hundreds of Boeing 737s,” which could represent a major turning point in terms Of the weight of gas oil in the imports of liquid fuels currently made by the Government.
However, Mithá warns that it will be necessary to look at the question of the price of the final product and the tax question, so as to see if this industry will not ask for some exemptions or facilities that could balance the fiscal situation. Moreover, Shell itself in the press statement covering the visit of the Head of State said that these are aspects that are being negotiated with the Government and that they may demand an attractive tax regime. Alex Battaglia, Shell’s representative in Mozambique, did not say, however, what the tax regime the company could propose to the Government.
Regarding the other two projects that the Government awarded, part of Rovuma’s natural gas, ENH’s PCA said that it did not have the investment values that it will carry out, because the company that it directs will not integrate the respective shareholder structures. But it is known that it is Yara International, which was awarded 90 million cubic feet / day for the production of 1.3 million metric tons of fertilizers and 50 megawatts of electric power, and GI Energy Africa accounted for 41.8 million Cubic feet / day for the production of 250 megawatts of electricity.
On the other hand, Omar Mithá clarified that all this amount of natural gas will not be the royalties that the Government should receive from ENI and Anadarko, but the part of the gas that those companies are obliged by law to sell in the national territory, Promote industrialization and economic development of the country. Moreover, on royalties, the Government prefers to export gas and earn money in order to finance its activities.
In the meantime, the Government had to hold a public tender to ensure transparency in the distribution of the quotas for this natural gas, because there was a lot of competition. “In order that there might not be a situation of inequality, favoritism or other situations that could be associated, even corruption, it was preferred to make a public tender,” said Mithá, adding that among the criteria were taken into account ” Profitability, effects on the economy, reduction of imports, reduction of regional asymmetries, among others, without forgetting, of course, the viability and sustainability of the project itself, from the socio-economic point of view, “he said.
In the course of his visit, the President of the Republic visited the Senate of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, where he met with some senators; Visited the Erasmus Center for Enterpreneurship, an entity in which the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation initialed a partnership agreement with that entity; Visited the Institute of Applied Water Research in order to find out about the country’s experience in water management, considering that it is below sea level and rains almost every day. Develop a strategy to prevent cyclical flooding.
Filipe Nyusi also visited the port of Rotterdam, one of the largest and most important ports in the world, and met with academics and some members of Dutch civil society. His wife, Isaura Nyusi, visited Phillips, a giant of electrotechnology, where he got to know the latest high-tech medical equipment developed by that multinational that has an interest in increasing the sale of such equipment to health units.
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