Coral South: the gas field off the coast of Mozambique

Coral South is the first project launched in the country's offshore that develops and produces significant hydrocarbon resources.

Development using a floating 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.. In 2016, we signed an agreement to sell 100 per cent of LNG production to British Petroleum (BP), and on 1 June 2017, we embarked on the start-up phase of the project, just three years after drilling the last test well. The liquefied gas is sold by us and other Area 4 concessionaires (including CNPC, Galp, Kogas, the Mozambican state company ENH and Exxon Mobil through its operator Mozambique Rovuma Venture S.p.A.) to BP, under a 20-year contract with an optional 10-year extension. 

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. The project has reached a progress of more than 80% and the production start-up is expected in 2022.

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. The FLNG has reached the Rovuma Basin, off the coast of Mozambique, where it will be connected to underwater production wells by the second half of 2022 for first gas. The project will generate significant revenues for the country, and will create more than 800 new jobs during the operational period.

Coral-Sul FLNG ready to sail away to Mozambique: photogallery and video

In November 2021 Eni held the naming and sail away ceremony of the Coral-Sul FLNG, the first floating LNG facility ever to be deployed in the deep waters of the African continent. The FLNG will be now towed and moored at its operating site in the Rovuma basin offshore Mozambique. Once the FLNG facility will be in place, the installation campaign will begin, including mooring and hook-up operations at a water-depth of around 2,000 meters by means of 20 mooring lines that totally weight 9,000 tons.

The launch of the hull of the FLNG: photogallery

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. In 2019, we began drilling and completing six subsea wells for feeding the liquefaction units. They will be drilled about 2,000 metres under water and have an average depth of about 3,000 metres.

The last topside module lifting: photogallery

In November 2020 we announced the lifting and installation of the last of the 13 topside modules of the Coral-Sul FLNG facility, currently under construction in South Korea. This lifting, which marks the end of the onshore-modules fabrication campaign configuring the entire gas treatment and liquefaction plant, is to schedule and in line with the expected sail-away in 2021 and gas production start-up in 2022.

Coral South

Safety first

We regard safety at work as a core value – one we share with employees, contractors and local communities. That is why we do everything we can to avoid accidents, using organisational models to assess and manage risks, implementing training, developing expertise and promoting a culture of safety.


A floating unit for liquefying and exporting gas – and a real technological jewel – Coral Sul FLNG will be the first such on the African continent and the third in the world. Coral Sul FLNG will be 432 m long and 66 m wide, and weigh about 220,000 tonnes overall. The accommodation module will have eight floors with room for 350 people. It will be anchored about 2,000 meters deep, with the help of 20 lines weighing 9,000 tonnes combined. Construction of the main components began in 2018. Construction is taking place in seven working centres around the world.

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.

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 safety measures while ensuring training quality and continuity.

The trainees are traveling 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 will be 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.

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.