South Africa will introduce new oil and gas laws to attract investment into the sector in 2019.
Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe in June placed a moratorium on the exploration and development of South Africa’s oil and gas space to allow the Department of Mineral Resources to change its licensing process.
Last month, the minister said that the moratorium would be relaxed after the 2019 national elections, in a bid to accelerate investment and advance the processing of exploration and production applications that are already in the system.
Mantashe pointed out that the country’s oil and gas sector could create jobs and contribute to the economy.
“Together, we will develop this sector. We know that government cannot grow and develop this sector [alone]. It is you who can develop and grow this sector and it is us who must create the necessary environment for you to develop the sector,” he said, highlighting the importance of getting industry on board to avoid stagnation during the public consultation process.
In 2013, the Department of Mineral Resources said it would separate the oil and gas industry from the mining industry’s Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Amendment Bill, so that it could be developed into its own sector.
The process of approval of exploration applications will be completed under the current mineral and petroleum law.