Total says Mozambique LNG project progressing despite instability

The logo of French oil and gas company Total is seen at a petrol station in Neuville Saint Remy, France, October 1, 2020. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

PARIS (Reuters) - French oil and gas major Total said on Thursday it was moving ahead with its $20 billion natural gas (LNG) project in Mozambique, despite growing concerns about a wave of militant attacks by rebels with links to Islamic State.

Mozambique last week asked the European Union for support in tackling the conflict in the country’s north, which has raised fears for stability and security in southern Africa.

“The situation is serious,” Total Chairman and Chief Executive Patrick Pouyanne told reporters at an event on Thursday. “The project has so far progressed ... it’s a major one for the country.”

Total is the operator of the Mozambique LNG project, and obtained a $14.9 billion debt financing package in July to fund its roll-out.

The project includes the development of the Golfinho and Atum natural gas fields in the Offshore Area 1 concession, and the construction of a two-train liquefaction plant with a capacity of 13.1 million tons per year.

Reporting by Benjamin Mallet, Writing by Sarah White; editing by David Evans