Sasol announces job cuts and end of West African oil operations

South Africa’s Sasol has today announced plans to cut jobs and end its West African oil operations as part of a major business revamp.

The petrochemicals producer has been contemplating its rising debt levels, falling oil and chemical prices and lower global demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Following the review, Sasol will reshape into two core businesses; chemicals and energy, with each responsible for their own profit and loss, the group said.

“The revision of our strategy aims to have a greater focus on enhanced cash generation, value realisation for shareholders and business sustainability,” said Sasol in a statement.

The group said the revamp would affect its workforce, but did not say how many jobs might be lost, and confirmed that it would discontinue all oil growth activities in West Africa.

Last month, Sasol underlined a commitment to lowering its carbon emissions by considering procurement of renewable energy to power its heavily polluting South African operations.

Sasol also confirmed today it had agreed a new debt framework with lenders, but is facing a rise in borrowing costs.