South Africa’s Minister Advocates for Unified Development of Africa’s Oil and Gas Sector

by Oluwatosin Racheal Alabi

In a recent event held in Cape Town, Gwede Mantashe, South Africa’s Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, emphasized the importance of a collective and sustained approach to the development of Africa’s oil and gas resources.

Highlighting Africa’s vast hydrocarbon assets, critical minerals, and recent discoveries in countries such as Namibia, Ivory Coast, and South Africa, Mantashe viewed these resources as pivotal in addressing the continent’s energy deficiencies and catalyzing industrial growth.

“The growth of Africa’s oil and gas sector can redefine its global stature, much like it did for developed countries. Postponing this growth jeopardizes our mission to eliminate energy scarcity in Africa,” Mantashe said.

He pointed out the necessity of fossil fuel development to provide a stable power baseload for Africa’s energy-intensive nations. As an example, he mentioned that several developed countries have restarted their coal-fired power plants due to disruptions in Russian gas supply.

Moreover, Mantashe made a strong case for ramping up investment in refining capabilities. This step would ensure Africa not only explores but also processes and benefits from its natural wealth locally.

Mantashe expressed, “It’s untenable for Africa to remain a global supplicant, importing refined petroleum products. The moment is ripe for Africa to pool its resources, secure funding for resource exploration, and bolster its refining potential.”

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