Matt is an energy and infrastructure lawyer based in Cape Town.
Matt's authoritative knowledge is in energy and infrastructure project work. His main areas of activity are in oil & gas, unconventional gas, nuclear, and renewable energy power generation.
Matt has been listed as a leading lawyer in the financial and corporate space by IFLR1000, 2016. He was listed as a leading energy and infrastructure lawyer, IFLR1000, 2014.
Oil and Gas
Matt has extensive experience in the upstream oil and gas sector throughout Southern Africa. Prior to the organisations’ amalgamation into PetroSA, colleague Professor Michael Dale and Matt undertook all of the upstream work for Soekor E&P and Mossgas. Other upstream clients presently include PetroSA (the South African national oil company), Statoil, Bayfield Energy PLC, Trinity E&P Ltd, PolyTech Ltd, Mitsubishi, and Molopo E&P.
Matt is also closely involved with the extensive expansion and development of the midstream oil and gas sector in South Africa. He advises several oil majors on the development of storage and distribution terminals throughout Southern Africa, advises clients on refining assets, and is called upon continually to advise on compliance with environmental and regulatory frameworks and policy. Key clients in this particular sector include Chevron, BP, Shell, Total, Engen, SAPREF, PetroSA and Oando PLC.
Matt has been involved in the downstream petroleum sector in Southern Africa for nearly 25 years. Transactions have included the acquisition of an oil major’s entire downstream business in South Africa and across the African continent, the disposal of an oil major’s entire downstream operations in Southern African countries, advising a Pan-African petroleum company on the establishment of its downstream business across southern Africa, and advising key players on critical environmental and regulatory framework compliance (including advice to international petroleum companies on the implementation of the new Regulated Accounts System (fuel pricing system) in South Africa). Key clients include Chevron, PetroSA, Engen, Total, BP and Oando PLC.
Sharing his experience in the upstream and downstream oil and gas regulatory environment, Matt has authored the chapters on South African petroleum law in the seminal textbook Dale et al: SA Mineral and Petroleum Law.
Matt has been an integral part of the firm’s teams representing sponsors, developers and lenders in numerous projects participating in the South African Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (SA REIPPPP). Matt has represented local energy companies and foreign utilities in the acquisition and further development of wind and solar pv projects, to the aggregate value of in excess of R30 billion.
Key clients include Cennergi, Enel Green Power, Mulilo/Sonnedix, Total/SunPower, Sagit Energy Ventures and Soventix. Matt has also advised lenders, including Nedbank, Standard Bank and ABSA Capital on EPC and O&M contracts in various renewable energy projects.
Matt presently represents China Heavy Machinery Corp. as EPC contractor for the construction of the largest biofuel manufacturing facility in South Africa.
Presently, Matt is closely engaged with Fusion Energy on various biomass/cogeneration opportunities.
Matt has been closely involved with the continuing development of the South and Southern African power sector, both from a generating and transmission point of view.
To this end, Matt has consulted to the provincial government of the Western Cape on the proposed development of CCGT power generating assets on the Cape West Coast, and the development of appropriated infrastructure required for delivery of fuel (gas). Matt has also been part of the firm’s teams consulting to various clients in Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique on various power generation projects and development of transmission infrastructure.
Nuclear power generation
For many years Matt represented the National Nuclear Regulator, advising on appropriate implementation and enforcement of legislation and regulations.
Presently, Matt is retained by a group of EPC contractors forming a consortium with foreign contractors to bid in the impending further nuclear power generation procurement in South Africa (Nuclear 2).
Further to his extensive past involvement in contentious work involving international corporations and foreign jurisdictions, Matt is regularly called upon to advise on risk assessment and mitigation in a variety of project and financing agreements in the energy and infrastructure sectors, and to advise appropriate dispute resolution mechanisms, in particular with respect to international arbitration provisions.
Matt holds a BA LLB degree from the University of the Witwatersrand, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Maritime Law from the University of Cape Town. He was admitted as an attorney in 1991 and as an attorney-advocate in 1995.