Following their announcement last year that they were in negotiations to combine their Angolan businesses, bp and Eni have officially signed an agreement to form a new 50/50 independent company in the country, Azule Energy.
Azule Energy, a bp and Eni Company, combines both majors’ businesses in Angola with over 200,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) of net production and 2 billion barrels equivalent of net resources. Azule Energy is a new and independent international energy company that will hold both companies’ stakes in 16 licenses in Angola along with their participation in Angola LNG and Eni’s stake in the Solenova solar company.
Currently Eni is operator of Blocks 15/06, Cabinda North, Cabinda Centro, Block 1/14, Block 28 and soon the Natural Gas Consortium. In addition, the Italian major has a stake in the non-operated Blocks 0 (Cabinda), 3/05, 3/05A, 14, 14 K/A-IMI, 15 and in Angola LNG. On its side, bp is operator of Blocks 18 and 31 offshore Angola, and has non-operated stakes in blocks 15, 17, 20 and 29. bp also has non-operated interests in the Natural Gas Consortium and in Angola LNG.
“Azule Energy will continue to develop the full potential of the country’s upstream sector, while also positioning itself to capture new opportunities from the energy transition with the growing role of gas and renewables in its portfolio,” Eni said in a statement yesterday.
Two FPSO hubs in the making
Two of the key assets operated by the new company are Block 15/06 (Eni) and Block 31 (bp). On Block 15/06, Azule Energy will notably be executing the full field development of Agogo. Tenders were issued by Eni in July 2021 for a project targeting a peak production of 120,000 bopd via the installation of a third FPSO unit on the block.
On Block 31, it will be in charge of the development of the Palas, Astraea and Juno (PAJ) fields. In July 2019, an Executive Decree approved their status as marginal to make their development economically viable, in line with Presidential Legislative No. 6/18 of 18 May 2018. As a result, the PAJ project is expected to develop about 135 million barrels using a new leased FPSO.
A critical gas player
Azule Energy will also become a critical player in the development of Angola’s natural gas industry. At the end of 2019, bp and Eni had joined Chevron, TotalEnergies and Sonangol in forming the New Gas Consortium, a new joint venture that will explore and produce gas in Angola and represents the country’s first upstream natural gas partnership.
Eni holds 25.6% in the joint-venture while bp Angola holds another 11.8%. The New Gas Consortium will supply gas to Angola LNG by developing several new assets, starting with the Eni-operated Quiluma and Maboqueiro fields in Block 2.