Thailand and the southeast African state of Mozambique are exploring joint investments in energy-related projects and the mineral sector, with Thailand to transfer energy knowledge and provide training on natural-gas production, petrochemicals and coal-fuelled power plants.
Thailand is also interested in mineral resource exploration in Mozambique and providing investment promotion and academic exchanges with the aim of expanding trade and investment for the gems and jewellery industry.
According to Thailand’s commerce minister Boonsong Teriyapirom, a memorandum of understanding on mineral resource cooperation with Mozambique has been signed on February 8. The MoU includes an agreement on raw materials supply for Thailand’s gem and jewellery sector, while Mozambique will receive knowledge about mineral and gem certification, cutting technology and value addition.
Mozambique is Thailand’s largest provider of raw materials for gems and jewellery, followed by Madagascar, Sri Lanka and India.
In the energy sector, an MoU on energy cooperation could be signed shortly, Thailand’s energy minister Pongsak Ruktapongpisal said. He expects Mozambique to become one of Thailand’s key energy traders in the future if the two countries join forces in energy-related projects.
He added that Thailand’s oil giant PTT might invest in a small refinery in Mozambique. The country consumes 8 trillion cubic feet of natural gas per day and exports 22,000 barrels of oil per day.
Recently, PTT Exploration and Production (PTTEP) took over Cove Energy, which owns an 8.5-per cent share in a huge natural-gas field in Mozambique estimated at 60 trillion cubic feet. PTTEP is expected to start generating liquefied natural gas from Cove within six years.