Commenting on the role of the AOG conference in driving investments in Angola, Miguel Artacho, International Conference Director at ECP, stated that, “This year is the third edition of this conference. Our last edition happened through a more complicated time due to the pandemic. But this is a very important time for the energy sector worldwide and also in Angola, with energy demand, poverty and prices increasing. Angola has now surpassed Nigeria as the biggest oil producer in sub-Saharan Africa, and as such, will play a huge role in stabilizing energy supplies across the region and globe. With the energy sector representing the main industry in the country, representing more than 95% of exports, it is crucial to drive investments in the country for economic growth.”
In addition to high-level panel discussions, exclusive networking sessions, one-on-one meetings, technology and project exhibitions and various forums, AOG 2022 will highlight the investment opportunities within the country’s energy sector. “We will release our investment report titled, ‘Angola Energy Investment 2022,’ which showcases a very detailed analysis of Angola’s entire energy value chain including opportunities in oil and gas production, exploration and refining, and in renewables,” added Artacho.
Regarding the advantages which Angola holds over other African countries in attracting investments, Artacho added that, “The country has an extensive quantity of natural resources, and with the current energy crisis in Europe, exploration and production taking place in Angola through companies such as ExxonMobil, TotalEnergies, Chevron and Somoil are crucial. This is a great opportunity for gas producing countries from sub-Saharan Africa such as Angola to attract funding. The investment environment in Angola is in continuous improvement. The presidency of H.E. João Lourenço has fought for more transparency, and this is very important for investors, because it represents security. The business environment also continues to improve and AOG 2022 will look at how Angola’s gas sector can expand in a continuous way.”
Adding to Artacho’s comments, Sérgio Pugliese, President of the AEC in Angola, stated that “For the past four to five years, Angola went through a sort of reform phase in terms of industries, the creation of the agency, the re-modelling project within Sonangol and the privatizations of state companies. Angola has always been an attractive destination for investments in terms of oil and I believe now there is space to focus on attracting investments for new areas such as gas exploration. We are one of the few countries in Africa, if not in the world, with the ‘big five.’ We have the main players in the industry here; we hold world records; we have the longest horizontal well in the world at Block 405; and we have the deepest well ever done at Block 48 by TotalEnergies. Angola has always been a proud market for these companies because it challenges their technologies and their limits. We also have successful ratings in terms of discoveries. For every three to four wells, there is a discovery. This is a very positive statistic. Our law is pro-investment and has been for the past thirty years.”
Commenting on how AOG 2022 will help Angola address industry challenges, Pugliese, added that, “We are going through a rather challenging phase due to the energy transition which is disrupting energy investments and global energy security. Many companies relying on the extractive industry are competing to attract investments and that is why we have partnered with ECP and MIREMPET to establish a platform that allows us to discuss market opportunities within Angola’s extractive industry and the engine of the economy. AOG 2022 will focus on what is needed in terms of increasing the energy mix of economies and continue to set goals to diversify the economy. AOG 2022 takes place after a very turbulent year, such as the situation between Ukraine and Russia, which leads to the topic of energy security and what opportunities it can bring to Africa.”
In conclusion, Pugliese stated that, “We are proud to have been a part of the first conference in 2019 which attracted more than $4 billion in terms of investment opportunities. We will continue to support Angola in this noble mission of attracting quality investments and investors, through which we can improve our industry, our economy and our workforce.”