MAPUTO, Mozambique, May 10 (UPI) -- The government in Mozambique confirmed Royal Dutch Shell aims to develop natural gas resources off the country's coast.
Shell in April made a $1.8 billion buyout offer to Cove Energy, which holds an 8.5 percent stake in an offshore block estimated to hold as much as 30 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
Mozambique President Armando Guebuza was quoted by the Bloomberg News agency as saying the bid could help with the development of a liquefied natural gas facility for exports to Asian markets.
"We're working with Shell on that specific problem," he said. "We're pleased with what's happening."
Shell confirmed it has received approval from the country's Ministry of Natural Resources to move ahead with the deal.
Guebuza said other international energy companies were invited to take part in the LNG efforts in an effort to stimulate his country's dismal economy.
Italian energy company Eni said in March it made a "new giant natural gas discovery" in the deep waters off the coast of Mozambique. That find, the company said, increases the resource base by at least 10 trillion cubic feet.
"Our vision is to turn our mineral resources into a driving force for social transformation," the president was quoted as saying.