Kagame’s New-found Friendship with French President is About Saving France’s US$20 Billion Investment in Mozambique

Kagame with Macron in France on May 17, 2021 (top) and with President of Mozambique Filipe Nyusi, April 28, 2021 in Rwanda

By David Himbara

France does not want to send its soldiers to secure its US$20 billion Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Project in Mozambique, which is the largest French foreign investment in Africa. French energy giant Total suspended operations at its gas fields in northern Mozambique after Islamist militants overran the region. France and Mozambique have been working behind the scenes to get General Paul Kagame to provide soldiers to secure French investments in Mozambique.

The French energy giant, Total, is in danger of losing its US$20 billion Liquefied Natural Gas project in Mozambique. Total’s Mozambique LNG Project started with the discovery of a vast quantity of natural gas off the coast of northern Mozambique. The site of the LNG project at Afungi was repeatedly attacked by militants linked to the Islamic State in March-April 2021. During the March 2021 attacks, dozens of foreign contract workers were besieged at the Amarula Palma Hotel.

This development was the context of the sudden and short visit to Rwanda by Mozambican President Felipe Nyusi on April 28, 2021. Nyusi came to Rwanda looking for an army for hire to secure French investment in the restive Cabo Delgado province. Shortly after Nyusi’s visit to Rwanda, General Paul Kagame dispatched his military commanders to assess how to battle the Islamist insurgents in Cabo Delgado. Fast forward to May 17, 2021. Both Kagame and Nyusi were guests of France’s Emmanuel Macron as part of his French-African summit. Did the bilateral discussions between these three men include a discussion about Mozambique’s restive Cabo Delgado province? You bet. Watch out – Kagame is about to hire out his soldiers to save France’s US$20 billion in Mozambique.