A decision by Norway’s Equinor to embark on independent talks with Tanzanian authorities on a host government agreement designed to underpin a liquefied natural gas project is said to have raised hackles with Anglo-Dutch supermajor Shell.
Equinor’s Block 2, where ExxonMobil is a partner, hosts 20 trillion cubic feet of gas, while Shell’s blocks 1 and 4 host about 16 Tcf. The companies previously agreed to develop the offshore resources to feed a multi-train LNG plant at Lindi.
Equinor’s recent move to begin talks this month with President John Magufuli’s government has raised questions about its commitment to a joint LNG project and, according to some sources, created friction with Shell.
Equinor is said to be “Ploughing its own furrow” because it wants to operate a major LNG project – the Snohvit LNG scheme in Norway is small – and Tanzania is its only option.