Africa Oil & Gas: ExxonMobil may help pay for Sonangol for oil platforms

Oil offshore platforms

The ExxonMobil Corporation may help resolve the payment for two oil platforms ordered by Sociedade Nacional de Comubustíveis de Angola (Sonangol) from South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME), reports the Angolan newspaper Novo Jornal.

Citing information disclosed in the South Korean press, the Angolan newspaper affirms that the American group is negotiating with Sonangol an advance of US$879 million which will enable DSME to release two large-scale structures to drill in blocs pertaining to the Angolan state-held company.

The new CEO of the South Korean company, Jung Sung-leep, said Sonangol is negotiating the acquisition of funding from two or three major groups in the sector, and that the ExxonMobil group is “the best positioned one”.

If all goes well, as DSME hopes will happen, the two drilling platforms may be delivered to Sonangol after nearly a year of delay.

The two drillships ordered by the Angolan oil company from DSME were ready in mid-2016. But when delivery was already scheduled Sonangol, affected by the peak of an ongoing financial crisis, informed the South Korean company that it was unable to pay.

At stake was the contract-envisaged payment of 80 percent of nearly US$1.2 billion for construction and delivery of the two platforms that Sonangol was to put into service off the Angolan shore.

The newspaper also reports that there were negotiations in Luanda, with Isabel dos Santos already heading Sonangol, where agreement was reached on an end-2016 payment deadline, which did not happen.

The reason for yet another delay in closing the deal was the Angolan oil company’s inability to find an institution, specifically a banking institution, ready to accept the high risk associated to Sonangol. (source: Macauhub)


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