This agreement provides for the creation of a “joint force”, the outlines of which have not been revealed, which “will be responsible for ensuring the safety of project activities (…) on the Afungi site and around” , Total said in a statement.
The group announced in July the signing of a financing agreement of 13 billion euros for its project to exploit significant underwater gas reserves, discovered off the coast of the province of Cabo Delgado, on the border with Tanzania.
This predominantly Muslim region, one of the poorest in Mozambique, has been the scene of violent attacks for nearly three years by Islamists recently affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) group.
This violence has caused the death of more than 1,500 people and made more than 250,000 displaced among the population, according to NGOs and the UN.
Despite the repeated promises of President Filipe Nyusi, the sending of military reinforcements and the use of foreign mercenaries, the Maputo regime has so far proved incapable of restoring order.
The Islamists took control of the port of Mocimboa da Praia, near the gas installations, earlier in August.
“We are delighted with the support of the Mozambican government for the safe success of the project,” said the local manager of the French group, Ronan Bescond.
Other giants such as the American Exxon Mobil are involved in the exploitation of Mozambican gas.