Or is it?
Angola’s just concluded bid round exercise favoured, mainly, the country’s homegrown independents.
Nigerian owned companies are expected to be the primary beneficiaries of the ongoing divestment of 22 oil mining leases (OMLs) by AngloDutch Shell and ExxonMobil.
The Egyptian founded Pico-Cheiron recently finalized the $926Million purchase, along with the London listed Cairn Energy, of Shell’s equity in 13 onshore concessions and the Badr El-Din Petroleum Company (BAPETCO). in Egypt.
On the surface, it would seem the market has been flung open for homegrown African owned independents to grab E&P assets being sold by the state and being divested by the majors.
Believe us when we reiterate: There is a growing number of African born operators who want to put in sweat equity develop the asset and, in the process, build capacity.
But there’s a tendency we also see. The African independent can be more easily taken by the rentier instinct, and skew its work towards extracting enough to keep company owners financially comfortable and the rest of the system: tax to the state, reserves addition, increased output, community improvement, poorer.
For the most part since our founding in November 2001, this trade journal has eulogized the African homegrown independent.
Now we wonder if the concept is not overrated.
We ask you to connect with us as we interrogate this idea in our copies.
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