Story by Bruce Chahwanda, Political Editor
THE Government says Invictus Energy and its partners have discovered gas in Zimbabwe through the ongoing exploration activities in Muzarabani.
Briefing journalists in Harare this Thursday, the Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Honourable Zhemu Soda said the discovery will have a positive impact on the economic and social development of the country.
“The Government of Zimbabwe is pleased to announce that Geo Associates and its partners Invictus Energy and One Gas Resources have successfully declared a gas discovery in Zimbabwe through the ongoing exploration activities in Muzarabani.
“This is a major discovery and represents one of the most significant developments in the onshore oil and gas sector in the Southern Africa Region. The discovery is the first Triassic-aged hydrocarbon in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“Gas will support the diversification of Zimbabwe’s energy mix, enhance its security, and create jobs and opportunities for local communities. We are confident that this discovery will open up new horizons for Zimbabwe.”
The Minister reiterated that there is no confirmed discovery of oil as exploration is ongoing.
“Both the government and the Investor would want to reiterate that this is gas discovery, we have not yet confirmed the discovery of oil as further exploration, tests, and evaluations are still ongoing. The discovery will definitely change the economic landscape of the country.
“The nation will be kept appraised and informed of developments over this oil and gas exploration project. The discovery is a result of the long-term partnership between Geo Associates and the Government of Zimbabwe, with the Government providing an appropriate mining title and a conducive regulatory and fiscal environment for the project. Zimbabwe is proud and grateful for this cooperation and we are confident this will unlock the full potential of Zimbabwe’s oil and gas resources.”
Geo Associates Director, Mr Paul Chimbodza exploration is still ongoing, with indications that commercialisation of the product takes 18 months.
“Exploration is a lengthy process and will not happen overnight. The two wells drilled are 7km apart and we continue to explore.”
According to the government, the gas samples meet key international standards, while the company is conducting further appraisal and evaluation work to confirm the size and quality of the gas reservoirs.