Published on : Jun 10, 2015
Jose Eduardo dos Santos the Angolan President is on a 3 day visit to China, since June 8. The President’s visit is the fourth and is compelled by Angola’s current stressed economic condition, impacted by the drop in global oil prices. President Santos is seeking to enlist China’s assistance to manage the strains on Angola’s budget, cooperation in infrastructure projects, and oil and gas lines agreements.
China has been involved in Angola’s infrastructure development since two decades and is the country’s second biggest oil supplier after Saudi Arabia. China has been the prime contributor in aiding Angola’s airport, port, road, and rail large scale development plan over the past several years and this development would not have been possible without China’s cooperation and support.
Angola is in an intricate situation since the exchange includes private concessions for oil and gas to China. The country has to balance the equation between its China deals and interests of Western oil companies without alienating either side. Angola is also seeking credibility with investment and business opportunity with Western partners. The country aims to increase oil production to 2 million barrels per day from the current 1.8 million count.
Currently Angola has a few technical issues related to deep-water production. The north-western coast where foreign energy activity is focused is not given priority compared to the onshore concessions of central Angolan waters. There is no official declaration about the country’s intention. Given the close relationship and ties between China and Angola it would not be too soon for the countries to reach an agreement for a new oil and gas deal.