Coral South: the gas field off the coast of Mozambique

Coral South, the first project initiated in Mozambique, is developing the gas resources discovered in offshore area 4 in the Rovuma Basin.

Development using the Coral Sul FNLG, the floating liquefied natural gas unit

Coral South was the first project approved by our Area 4 partners for developing gas resources discovered in the Rovuma Basin, off Mozambique’s coast. The project involves producing and selling gas from the southern part of the Coral field, using a floating plant for liquefying natural gas (LNG) with a capacity of 3.4 million tonnes, linked to six subsea gas producing wells. Coral Sul was developed with an approach based on energy optimization, based on a systematic analysis of efficiency. Its characteristics include zero flaring during normal operations, the use of thermal efficient aero-derivative gas turbines for refrigerant compressors and generation, the use of Dry Low NOx technology to reduce NOx emission and waste heat recovery systems for the process. In June 2022, we began introducing hydrocarbons into the plant. With the introduction, the Coral Sul FLNG starts producing its first cargo of liquefied natural gas in the second half of 2022, thus adding Mozambique to the list of LNG-producing countries, and contributing to the country’s economic and social development.

Starting from the design phase, thanks to a systematic analysis of energy efficiency, solutions to minimise CO2 emissions were adopted, for example by means of gas turbines that have reduced emissions in comparison to similar ones, variable-speed electric engines, low-loss, high-voltage electric transformers, maximized system waste heat recovery (WHR) efficiency, boiler exhaust WHR, high-efficiency gas treatment. These technologies integrate and they are aimed at decreasing the energy used to liquefy the gas and minimising the impact on the environment, which places Eni's FLNG ship above the benchmark in its sector in terms of energy efficiency. Overall, Coral Sul FLNG's energy consumption is significantly lower than the industry average: 256 kWh per tonne of LNG produced instead of 275/400 kwh/ton of such units in operation today. This is the result of the expertise of an international team of technicians and engineers from three different continents: Asia, Africa and Europe.

The President of Mozambique inaugurates the Coral-Sul FLNG: photogallery

On 23 November 2022, the President of Mozambique, Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, visited and inaugurated the Coral-Sul FLNG installation. The inauguration was attended by the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Carlos Zacarias and by representatives of Mozambique’s government. They were accompanied by an Eni delegation led by Guido Brusco, Chief Operating Officer Natural Resources.  The event takes place after the shipment of the first LNG cargo on 13 November from Coral Sul FLNG.

The ship and field as seen from up close

Two augmented reality features to discover what Coral Sul FLNG looks like and where the gas that will be transformed into LNG comes from.


A milestone for development in Mozambique

The Coral South project provides a major new source of natural gas to help secure global supplies. Alone, the Coral field feeding the Coral Sul FLNG ship has an estimated reserve of about 500 billion cubic metres of natural gas. Considering the entire Coral, Mamba and Agulha geological complex, a “Supergiant”, the reserve contains an estimated 2.4 trillion cubic metres of gas. Processed and distributed as LNG, this gas will help to increase market availability and will be an important economic development lever for Mozambique. Transformed and distributed as GNL, this gas will increase availability on the market, and will be an important development lever for the country, generating significant income. For instance, the project has created over 800 new jobs during its operational phase.

In 2021, the FLNG reached the Rovuma basin, off the coast of Mozambique, and in the second half of 2022, it was connected to the subsea production wells for the first gas happened on 13th November 2022. 


Coral South in detail

An interactive feature with 3D reconstructions, videos and figures: browse our special report and discover how the great project offshore Mozambique came into being and how it operates.


A model of energy efficiency

A real gem of technology, the Coral Sul FLNG floating gas liquefaction and exporting unit will be the first of its kind on the African continent and third in the world. 432 metres long and 66 metres wide, the Coral Sul FLNG weighs a total of approximately 220 thousand tons, with an eight-storey living module that can accommodate up to 350 people. It is anchored at a depth of around two thousand metres, with the help of 20 mooring lines weighing a total of 9 thousand tons. Construction on its main components began in 2018.


A canyon at the bottom of the sea

The story of the geological exploration of the deep waters of East Africa, where the Coral South project stems.


Impact on the local community

The Coral South project involves us in local development, far wider than just the oil and gas sector. We have provided specialist training for more than 800 Mozambican workers, who will be employed in the project's operational phase. We are also committed to a huge programme of work for local communities, to improve their access to basic services such as education, clean water and health care, and support long-term, diversified, sustainable socio-economic growth.

In June 2021 eleven young Mozambican engineers left to South Korea for a six month on-the job training program, as a part of the intensive training delivered in the framework of the Coral South project. The training activities cover the most varied areas of Oil & Gas and are designed to meet the need for qualified professionals in Mozambique. A second group of 14 Mozambicans will also start training at a gas facility in Tunisia at the end of June, with other groups already planned in the coming months. The trainees, who recently completed their degree in Maputo and Pemba, are part of the 200 program launched by Eni in 2014 to facilitate and enhance the participation of national resources in Eni’s energy projects. The training activities were adapted to comply with Covid-19 traveled to Geoje, in South Korea, where construction activities of the Coral-Sul FLNG are ongoing, for on-the-job training and familiarization with the floating liquefaction plant. During their time abroad, trainees involved in daily operation activities, so as to be ready to join the project when Coral South project operations in Mozambique begin in 2022. This initiative aims to enhance local content and skill development in Mozambique and is part of Eni’s commitment to contribute to the social and economic development of the communities and country where it operates. Within the Coral South project development, in 2021 certain activities were launched also through suppliers engagement aiming to increase workforce of local small e medium-size companies.

Impact on the environment

As part of the Coral South project's Sustainability Plan, we signed an agreement in May 2022 to launch initiatives to protect and restore mangroves in the Cape Delgado area, with the aim of contributing to climate change mitigation. At the same time we will launch a sustainable agriculture programme and the development of procedures for access to water and health and hygiene services in the Mecufi district. The project for the protection of mangroves and local biodiversity will consist in replanting plants in an area of about 10 hectares along the coast and will be flanked by economic diversification initiatives such as beekeeping and aquaculture as alternative sources of income for communities. The agreement provides for the promotion of educational and awareness-raising campaigns on environmental protection, which will be organised in schools. The sustainable agriculture programme will cover an area of 40 hectares and will benefit about 500 small farmers, while as regards access to water, six water wells will be built and two will be put back into operation in the villages of Muária, Sambene and Natuco.

Eni has never conducted oil and gas exploration and development activities within the boundaries of natural sites included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. In May 2019, we formally committed never to do so and officially instated a biodiversity and ecosystem services (BES) policy as part of our transformation journey. We are committed to long-term investment – looking beyond short-term profit to find ways to help create a more sustainable planet – as recognised in our new company mission, which is in turn inspired by the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Grievance mechanism and stakeholder engagement plan for Coral South project execution phases

The Coral South project has adopted a Grievance Mechanism and specific Stakeholder Engagement Plan for the execution phase. The implemented Grievance Mechanism (GM) guarantees a proactive and structured approach enabling the project to receive, recognize, investigate, respond and resolve complaints and grievances from individuals/groups of individuals and organizations in a timely manner. A specific Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) is in place to ensure that all interested and affected parties are proactively informed and engaged during the execution phase. The plan establishes regular ways of information disclosure on the project activities and their impacts. Grievances can be lodged through the project green line number 800840840 (only inside Mozambique country) or email address, that can also be used to request additional information on the GM and SEP.

The construction of Coral Sul FNLG: photogallery and video

In November 2021, the christening ceremony was held in South Korea for the Coral-Sul FLNG, the facility that was towed and anchored in the Rovuma Basin, off the shore of Mozambique. Once the FLNG arrived in Mozambican waters, the installation campaign got underway, which included the mooring and hook-up operations using the 20 mooring lines weighing a total of 9 thousand tons, at a water-depth of around 2,000 metres.

In January 2020, with our Area 4 partners in South Korea, we launched the hull for the Coral Sul Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) treatment and liquefaction plant. It will extract 450 billion cubic metres of gas from the field. The hull is 432 metres long by 66 metres wide and weighs in at about 140,000 tonnes. The eight-storey living module, which will accommodate up to 350 people, has now been installed. All the main equipment is ready to be integrated, and we have started stacking the first deck. The plant will be the first ever FLNG built for deep waters and the first built specifically for Africa.

The development activities of Area 4 offshore (Eni’s interest 25%) in 2020 concerned the Coral South gas project, operated by Eni, and the gas discoveries of Mamba Complex where Eni is expected to coordinate the upstream development and production phase and ExxonMobil the construction and operation phase of natural gas liquefaction facilities onshore. Eni’s significant progress in reducing the time-to-market of reserves is underpinned by our Coral South flagship project, approved in 2017 just thirty-six months after the finalization of the exploratory campaign and now close to completion with the launch of the FLNG (Floating Liquefied Natural Gas) unit, the first floating LNG plant, whose construction started in 2018 is aligned to the time schedules and budgets, despite the pandemic.

Eni completa l’installazione dei moduli topside di Coral Sul FLNG

The building of the Coral Sul FLNG

Safety first

Safety in the workplace is an imperative value we want to share with our employees, contractors and local stakeholders. We are committed to eliminate accidents and protect the integrity of our assets. We consolidate a culture of safety through management and organization models, digital tools and communication initiatives. Our goal is strengthening the awareness of our people and their sense of responsibility toward themselves and others, by expanding HSE tools and digitalization to make corporate processes safer, more efficient and faster.