Eni is a giant Italian energy company of which 30% of shares are owned by the Italian Government. The company conducted a feasibility study in 2007 for their 'Food and Biofuel' project to grow palm oil in Mbe and Kibangou, Congo.
In May of 2008 Eni signed an MOU with the Government of the Republic of the Congo for an oil-palm plantation project on 'previously unfarmed' land. Eni was responsible for providing technical consultation on agricultural and infrastructural elements, as well as financial support. Their subsidiary Saipem recorded research and development activity on the project up to 2011 and according to ENI company shareholder meeting minutes the project was still in pilot project phase at this point. A study done at the same time discovered virtually no local public knowledge of the projects. In cooperation with the Congo Government Eni is also implementing tar sands oil extraction, an electric power station, and social projects. According to Congolese human rights organisations and their international partners, Enis plans in the Congo Basin risk irreversible damage to biodiversity, local communities and our climate, and break the company´s own guidelines.