Construction of a liquefied natural gas plant in Angola has halted after numerous design and mechanical problems, Reuters reported. In confirming reports of issues, Chevron said the problems with an emergency valve failure and a pressure blast caused production at the plant to stop in April. Chevron, along with Angola's state-run energy firm Sonangol, BP, Total and Eni, are partnering together for the plant, which was estimated to cost $10 billion in 2009. U.S.-based engineering company Bechtel is in charge of building the plant and in light of the recent problems, the added costs may increase the price of the project to between $12 and $14 billion.
With the recent shutdown, sources familiar with the project said the Angola LNG plant may not restart operations until mid-2015 or 2016. Despite the problems, Angola may have other energy projects in the pipeline.
Previously, South African energy and chemical firm Sasol said it was planning on building a gas-to-liquid plant in Mozambique and may carry out other opportunities in Angola.
"Angola, Ghana onshore and Tanzania, those types of countries is where we'll take a run," Sasol CEO David Constable told Reuters.