Zimbabwean government is excited after a potential prospect of Oil and Gas was discovered in Muzarabani area. President Mnangagwa says once exploited it will make the nation energy self-sufficient, create employment, empower the growth of the economy and enable huge downstream benefits.
According to the president Oil and Gas industry represents huge, unique and competitive investment opportunities given the significant potential for value chain linkages.
“the prospect of oil discovery is exciting”, which will inevitably positively impact local communities and the national economy at large.”
“The project will undoubtedly impact the GDP of Mashonaland Central Province as well as Muzarabani and surrounding districts,” he said.
The President was Speaking this at State house where he was a guest of honor during the signing of the petroleum exploration development and production agreement (PEDPA) between the Government and Australian oil and gas exploration firm, Invictus Energy.
The PEDPA will provide the framework for accelerated development of the Muzarabani oil and gas initiative while also detailing roles and obligations of each party throughout the project lifecycle.
“The signing of the (PEDPA) agreement represents major strides in our efforts to tap into our oil and gas deposits, which is a new territory in the country’s mining sector.
“The untapped oil and gas deposits present huge, unique and competitive investment opportunities, given that the industry has various potential downstream linkages,” said the President.
Beside the projects anticipated country energy self-sufficiency, it will also enhance electricity generation, production of liquid petroleum, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), Fertilizer production and petro-chemicals.
President Mnangagwa reiterated on the agreement signing of the PEDPA between them and Geo-Associates, Invictus’ as major shareholder, as a great testimony to the Government’s commitment of opening up the economy to investment as well as encouraging the global community to do business in Zimbabwe.
“This event shows the positive and tangible strides that my administration is making with regards to the ease and cost of doing business reforms.
“Zimbabwe is indeed open for business and investors are welcome to explore opportunities in other sectors of our economy, such as agriculture, manufacturing, energy and tourism, among others,” he said.
The President called upon partners to maintain goals set and in line with the agreement signed calling both parties to work in handy to achieve mutual benefits and outcomes as set under the National Development Strategy 1 (NDS1).
Geo-Associates owns the controlling stake in Invictus Energy, the Australia Stock Exchange-listed company that has made significant progress in exploring for oil and gas in Muzarabani.
According to the company it will use between US$15 million and US$30 million towards drilling of two oil and gas test wells in Muzarabani by October.
The signing of PEDPA that outlines the work framework of the progression of Muzarabani Oil and Gas project is expected to accelerate attainment of the Government’s US$12 billion mining industry target by 2023.
“I exhort all stakeholders to position themselves for the value chain benefits, new investments and technologies that will accrue from the exploration of oil and gas in our country,” Mnangagwa said.
However, the president called all stakeholders especially the major one Invictus to protect the environment in its operations.
The Presidents Sentiments and signing of the PEDPA with listed Geo Associates Company Invictus were echoed by the Vice President Constantino Chiwenga who applauded his boss for the huge demonstration of bettering the Zimbabwe economy through allowing the international companies to invest in the country.
“The signing of this agreement will help ensure that the mining sector continues to contribute to the economic development of the country, with the oil and gas sub-sector expected to contribute immensely towards the country’s vision of achieving an empowered and prosperous upper middle class society by 2030,” he said.
“This signing ceremony is testimony of the New Dispensation’s commitment to transforming the livelihoods of Zimbabweans. The mining sector is one of the building blocks upon which Vision 2030 is premised.
“As we implement the National Development Strategy 1, we welcome such partnerships, not only in the mining sub-sector, but across all sectors of the economy. The exploration and development of oil and gas resources is a game-changer in making the Zimbabwe energy sector self-sufficient which is key in realising our national vision.”
The Vice President assured the locals and Zimbabwe at large of the governements commitment to continue prioritizing increased production and productivity across all sectors of the economy.
Winston Chitando the Mines and Mining Development Minister said Zimbabwe might be a producer of oil by March next year in the event of successful discovery.
Reprocessed Data gathered by global oil giant, Mobil in the early 1990s, has shown encouraging evidence of the potential existence of oil and gas in Muzarabani.
The Oil and Gas discovery in Muzarabani area is timely and in event of its successful exploitation it will be greater stride achieved by the ministry and government at large in fulfilment of the target set by President Mnangagwa’s new administration upon inception in 2017, of making Zimbabwe energy self-sufficient.
“The area in question is 100 000 hectares of land and one of the early engagements we had, as the Second Republic was to engage with Geo-Associates and Invictus to work together to ensure that we work on the development programme of this asset.
“Should these (oil/gas test) wells be successful, as we hope, Zimbabwe will, by this time next year, be a producer of oil.”