Africa Energy Series – Angola speaks to NATCO, a mining, oil and gas company that has been offering services to the Angolan oil and gas industry for decades.
Can you give us an overview of the services NATCO supplies for the oil and gas industry in Angola?
Since its creation, Natco Angola has been focused on the mining and oil and gas industry. As part of the ILS group, we have been successfully providing international door-to-door supply chain management services, including procurement. For offshore projects, we provide brokerage for airplanes, vessels, platforms and more recently, through our recently created Shipping and port agency called ILS Agência Marítima SA.
How important is the oil and gas sector for NATCO Angola?
Oil and gas still represent some 90% of the Angolan economy and there is still a long way to go before recent investments made by the government take a real effect on the diversification of the economy. As a logistics company, this is of major importance to us and the reason why we invest in this important sector, apply human resources and services with quality.
What sets NATCO apart from the competition?
We work with the biggest players in the market and to earn their trust, we need to deliver excellence across the board. Short lines of communication and the development of customized solutions are advantages which only an owner managed private company can offer in this sector. Group organization is clearly structured and short decision-making channels ensure efficient work processes. A high level of technical expertise guarantees fast, flexible solutions and leads quickly to the results desired by our customers.
There have been groundbreaking changes in Angola’s oil and gas sector recently. How have these changes affected NATCO?
The main change has been the creation of the new National Agency for Petroleum, Gas, and Biofuels to assume the concessionaire functions – formerly executed by Sonangol – and which will report directly to the Minister of Mineral Resources and Petroleum. For us as a service provider, there is absolutely no change. This affects only petroleum companies and does not affect NATCO directly.
What is your outlook for 2019 and beyond?
Promising, we expect government progress in the reforms to turn the economy less oil dependent and more efficient, such as the introduction of the Asycuda World software tool in the national tax office and some changes at the national bank in relation to importation procedures and credit as well as access to foreign currency, will bring some benefits in the medium term regarding competitiveness and cost-efficient tools and procedures. However, results may not be visible in 2019 and it will still require more ambition going down this path to increase exports and imports required by the economy.