Zimbabwe Celebrates Historic Gas Discovery by Australian Company

Australian oil and gas explorer Invictus Energy has confirmed a significant gas discovery in Zimbabwe’s Cabora Bassa Basin, a game-changer for the country’s energy security and economic development.

by Motoni Olodun

Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Energy and Power Development has announced a breakthrough in the country’s quest for energy security and economic development. The ministry confirmed that Invictus Energy (ASX:IVZ), an Australian oil and gas explorer, has made the first Triassic-aged hydrocarbon discovery in Sub-Saharan Africa within the Upper Angwa formation of the Cabora Bassa Basin.

The discovery was made by the Mukuyu-2 appraisal well, which is about 7km away from the Mukuyu-1 well that had earlier confirmed a working hydrocarbon system in the basin. The Mukuyu-2 well encountered gas shows and recovered gas samples from the Upper Angwa formation, which has an estimated net pay of 15 meters.

The well is still drilling towards the deeper Lower Angwa formation, which could host more gas resources. Invictus plans to conduct wireline logging and possibly flow testing to evaluate the full potential of the discovery.

The Cabora Bassa Basin is one of the largest under-explored interior rift basins in Africa, with multi-trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of gas potential. Invictus holds an 80% interest in the SG 4571 license, which contains the Mzarabani conventional gas-condensate prospect, the largest undrilled, seismically defined structure in onshore Africa.

The prospect was first defined by Mobil (now part of ExxonMobil) in the 1990s but was relinquished due to the lack of gas demand at the time. Invictus has since acquired the license and expanded its footprint in the basin by signing an assignment agreement with the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Zimbabwe (SWFZ) for two adjacent exploration licenses in August 2022.

The gas discovery is a game-changer for Zimbabwe, which is facing chronic power shortages and economic challenges. The country relies heavily on imports of electricity and fuel from neighboring countries, which are costly and unreliable. The development of domestic gas resources could provide a cheaper and cleaner alternative for power generation and industrial use, as well as create jobs and revenue for the government.

The Minister of Energy and Power Development, Soda Zhemu, expressed his excitement and gratitude to Invictus for its investment and commitment to the project. He said the discovery was a historic milestone for the country and a testament to the untapped potential of its natural resources.

He also assured Invictus of the government’s full support and cooperation to ensure the successful development of the gas project. He said the government was working on creating an enabling environment for the oil and gas sector, including the formulation of a comprehensive legal and regulatory framework.

Invictus’ managing director, Scott Macmillan, said the company was delighted with the results of the Mukuyu-2 well and the confirmation of a significant gas discovery in Zimbabwe. He said the company was looking forward to completing the drilling program and advancing the project to the next phase.

He also thanked the government and the people of Zimbabwe for their continued support and partnership. He said the company was committed to delivering a world-class project that would benefit all stakeholders and contribute to the social and economic development of the country.

The gas discovery has also attracted international attention and praise, with several analysts and experts hailing it as a major achievement for Invictus and Zimbabwe. They said the discovery could open up a new frontier for exploration and development in Africa and transform the energy landscape of the region.

The discovery has also boosted the share price of Invictus, which rose by 31.25% to 21 cents on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) after the announcement. The company has a market capitalization of about $140 million and is backed by several institutional and strategic investors.

Invictus and Zimbabwe have shown that they are unconquerable and undefeated in their quest for gas. They have proven that with perseverance, innovation, and collaboration, anything is possible. They have given hope to a nation and a continent that is hungry for energy and prosperity.

Source: Stockhead

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