Angola, through its state-owned oil company Sonangol, has initiated the construction of the Lobito Refinery in partnership with the China National Chemical Engineering Company (CNCEC).
The Lobito Refinery, with an estimated investment cost of around $6 billion, will have a daily production capacity of 200,000 barrels of light and high-quality petroleum products. Angola, despite being a significant oil producer, currently relies heavily on imports, spending nearly $2 billion annually on petroleum product imports. The new facility is expected to tap into Angola’s vast untapped crude oil reserves of approximately 9 billion barrels, helping alleviate the country’s reliance on imported gasoline and oil.
Situated strategically near Angola’s 1,000-mile Atlantic coastline, the Lobito Refinery will receive crude oil from offshore platforms, converting it into petroleum products for domestic consumption and export to neighboring countries. It is anticipated that the refinery will supply petroleum products to the Republic of the Congo and Zambia, fostering regional economic growth and reducing the carbon footprint associated with long-distance fuel transportation in south-central Africa.
Operational Date Set for Lobito Refinery
This new petroleum processing facility, slated to be operational by 2025, aims to expand Angola’s crude oil production and reduce its dependence on energy imports. This project is part of Angola’s broader economic development strategy as the country seeks to capitalize on its significant oil reserves. Sonangol is concurrently involved in other major refinery projects, including one in Soyo capable of producing up to 100,000 barrels of crude per day and another in Cabinda set to distill 60,000 barrels of refined oil daily.
Additionally, there are plans to privatize part of Sonangol’s equity by 2026, marking a significant shift in the ownership structure of the state-owned energy company. As Angola positions itself as a key player in the global energy market, these initiatives are expected to contribute to stability and growth in the country’s economy.