Mozambique has begun its sixth licensing round, which will last until August 31, 2022, and will be conducted both online and in person.

The offering is made up of 16 blocks. The northern Rovuma Basin has five, the Angoche Basin has seven, the Zambezi Delta has two, and the Save area has two. Around 92,000 square kilometres of land are up for grabs.

The round was organized by the Instituto Nacional de Petróleo (INP).

By June 30, 2022, applications must be sent by registered mail or hand-delivered to the INP offices in Maputo. Applications sent via email will not be accepted.


To participate in the round, companies must go through a pre-qualification process. This closes on February 22. Operators in the deepwater must have assets of more than $2 billion, while non-operators must have at least $250 million.

INP will evaluate bids on four criteria. Half the marks available will be for the technical work programme, while the economic proposal will carry 37% of the bid. The last 13% will apply to company expertise. The regulator did include HSE in its example scorecard but did not attribute any direct weight to this.

INP said it would encourage “companies to present a technical proposal that will maximise the knowledge of the petroleum potential of the Areas on offer”.

A technical database on the blocks is on offer from INP’s website. It said that 37 wells had been drilled around the 16 blocks, with a good database also available.

It is offering seismic data in physical and virtual data rooms.

The areas in the Rovuma offshore are R6-A, R6-B, R6-C, R6-D and R6-E, covering 28,241 square km. The seven blocks offshore Angoche – A6-A, A6-B, A6-C, A6-D, A6-E, A6-F and A6-G – cover 40,420 square km.

The two Zambezi blocks, Z6-A and Z6-B, cover 11,656 square km. The two save areas, S6-A and S6-B, cover a similar area at 11,479 square km.

In the Rovuma Basin, the R6-A block is to the north of Areas 1 and 4, home of major gas discoveries and operated by TotalEnergies and Eni. This block on offer is in water depths of 1,500-2,800 metres.

Work commitments on this block include reprocessing 500 km of 2D seismic and 2,000 square km of 3D seismic in addition to shooting 1,000 square km of new 3D seismic. The winner must carry this out in the first phase. A well must be drilled in the second and third phases.

The R6-C block covers much of the acreage that previously fell under Area 2. Tullow Oil drilled two wells on this block in 2013, making one non-commercial discovery.

Beyond Rovuma

The Angoche blocks lie to either side of areas already licensed to Eni and ExxonMobil. Exxon also has two blocks in the Zambezi area.

The minimum work commitment on the Zambezi Z6-B block’s first phase includes the acquisition of 1,000 km of 2D seismic, 1,500 square km of 3D and the drilling of one well. This is the only block where INP requires the winning bidders to drill a well in the first phase.

Exxon issued a tender for a deepwater drilling rig in 2019 on the Angoche 5B and Zambezi 5C and 5D blocks. Eni is also working on plans to drill in its Angoche area.

Gayle Meikle, CEO of Frontier welcomed the launch of Mozambique’s sixth licence round.

“Frontier was delighted to have the opportunity to develop a communications strategy to take the message of the Mozambique 6th Licensing Round out to the world upstream and investment community. It is more important than ever for African governments to seize the moment with regards to oil & gas investment and Frontier’s extensive African experience, insight and network has paid dividends.”

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