Morocco to tender for $4.6-billion natural gas project

By Mahmoud Habboush on 1/15/2018

ABU DHABI (Bloomberg) -- Morocco, which depends on imports for almost all of its energy needs, will soon tender for companies to build a $4.6-billion natural gas project, Energy Minister Aziz Rabbah said.

The project will process gas for power and provide gas to industry, Rabbah said Sunday in an interview in Abu Dhabi. With the financial and technical consultants chosen, the tender will be for a group to build the plant, he said.

“This is a project to build an integrated plant to process gas,” he said.

Morocco imported 97% of its energy, according to a World Bank report in 2015. The North African country is seeking to reduce its dependency on imported fossil fuels, with plans to generate 42% of its energy from renewables by 2020, Rabbah said. “We might surpass that target because there are massive investments now.”

The government is also waiting for a court decision on the future of Morocco’s only oil refinery, the bankrupt Samir plant. On Oct. 21, a Moroccan court granted a three-month extension to allow the court-appointed liquidator to find a buyer. “We either find a buyer or it will be completely shut down,” he said.

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