Written by: Mailapa Ndjavera New Era

Namibia is expected to receive the highest exploration Capital expenditure (CapEx) in Africa from Total Energies to the value of US$300 million, which is approximately N$5.5 billion. Acting managing director of the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia Shiwana Ndeunyema shared the figures yesterday on the expected capital spending on exploration from 2023 to 2036.

Speaking during the oil and gas conference underway in Windhoek, Ndeunyema added that CapEx is likely to increase due to the potential of additional discoveries. CapEx are funds used by a company to acquire, upgrade and maintain physical assets, such as property, plants, buildings, technology or equipment. CapEx is often used to undertake new projects or investments by a company. The two-day event attracted over 700 delegates. The primary objective of this conference was to create a platform for a largescale public consultation, bringing together key stakeholders, including industry experts, policymakers and civil society to discuss and explore opportunities, challenges and advancements in Namibia’s oil and gas sector.

Ndeunyema noted there is a need for a policy statement on the Namibian oil and gas sector. This is the Namibian state’s ideological dispensation in terms of what it aims to achieve from the petroleum sector from which all policy, strategies and initiatives will flow. “Namcor’s role is critical from a resource and revenue maximisation perspective. We are committed to jointly working together with the JV partners and government to successfully develop the recent oil and gas finds in Namibia. “We need to unpack and understand the oil and gas value chain, as it will enable the country to leverage immediate opportunities, address skill gaps and strategically develop industries that align with the sector’s requirements. Investor policy certainty and a conducive business working environment are critical to the success of the industry,” recommended the acting MD. At the same occasion, mines and energy minister Tom Alweendo warned that poor management of the oil and gas sector can drive corruption and inequality that will in turn fuel social tensions and threaten political stability. “Oil is not an automatic remedy to all our socio-economic challenges. While potential significant oil investments are expected to flow into Namibia, it is not a given that prosperity will follow. Prosperity will follow only if the investments and the consequent oil revenue are well-managed. If not wellmanaged, the subsequent result could well worsen socio-economic challenges,” cautioned Alweendo.

In her keynote address, Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa- Amadhila said government is committed to promoting responsible development that encompasses economic prosperity, social progress and environmental well-being. “This conference is of vital importance, as Namibia recognises the full potential of the sector, which undoubtedly brings economic growth, offering new avenues for employment creation, skills development and investment opportunities. This will improve the socio-economic welfare of the Namibian people,” said Kuugongelwa-Amadhila.

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