What?! Mauritania’s Oil and Gas growth hinges on THESE 5 key sectors?!
Are you even comprehending the stunning significance of Mauritania’s newfound attractiveness for investment? The discovery of the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim (GTA) gas field and developments regarding the BirAllah field have created numerous economic opportunities through oil and gas monetization. The MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power conference and exhibition will showcase all of this from November 21-22 this year.
The lack of infrastructure in Mauritania has been a significant constraint on economic growth, as per the World Bank. But large-scale energy developments such as GTA demand significant infrastructure investment opportunities like roads, pipelines, and storage facilities. Therefore, the potential for growth in that area has skyrocketed. Developing these projects not only creates job opportunities in construction and maintenance but also elevates the economy.
The transformation of the port city of Nouadhibou into a regional gas processing, import, and export hub is one such project that requires expansion of the current 300,000 metric tons of oil storage capacity. Besides, the Banda Gas-to-Power Project developed by New Fortress Energy aims to produce natural gas for electricity generation by 2024. It also includes upstream gas field production and power transmission components and will promote regional integration through electricity exports to Senegal and Mali, reduce costs, and increase supply for Mauritanian households and industries.
Hydrogen has a crucial role to play in transitioning towards sustainable energy. Despite the potential of green hydrogen, its production is still limited and expensive. European Energy Research Alliance’s Chairman, Nils Røkke, suggests concurrently developing blue and green hydrogen, with green hydrogen gradually becoming the predominant form. Mauritania’s bp, with operator interests in GTA and BirAllah Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) fields, correspondingly studies the feasibility of a green hydrogen project in the country.
Mauritania’s Minister of Finance Isselmou Ould Mohamed M’Bady advocates a significant increase in blended financing to support the transition towards green energy, with using profits from first gas being one potential solution to finance green hydrogen projects.
Mauritania already represents a leading producer of minerals and benefits from a robust pool of local service providers to the extractive sectors, be it logistics and security or legal and engineering consulting. The expansion of infrastructure and the development of oil and gas projects will create even more job opportunities in this sector. For instance, the local consulting firm Meen&Meen, part of a joint venture with Jade Advisory and EPCM Holdings, has secured a strategic contract for the transformation of the south of Nouakchott port into a regional hub. The projected growth of 6.2% of GDP by 2025 in the country will also improve the quality and availability of services in the country.
The transportation industry is expected to benefit from increased demand for goods and people in Mauritania, with the African Development Bank estimating that the transport sector in the country will grow by 5.5% per year between 2020 and 2025. Though access to finance remains a significant challenge in Mauritania, with only 10% of the population having access to formal financial services, the government aims to inject a lot of resources into the Treasury and the Central Bank using revenues generated from oil and gas. This will create striking opportunities for local banks and financial institutions, enabling the broader business sector to benefit from improved access to capital.
Mauritania may be less known for tourism than its neighboring countries like Morocco and Senegal, but it has hidden gems like the Adrar region, which is full of fascinating sites such as the historic towns of Chinguetti and Ouadane. Adventurous travelers can even explore the Iron Ore Train, which runs from the mining town of Zouerat to the coastal city of Nouadhibou, offering striking views of the desert landscape. Enhanced road infrastructure and increased revenues will provide a massive boost to the hospitality and tourism sectors in Mauritania.