The Buzz: This Week in Africa

At the close of this week Brent Crude is trading at $51.66 per barrel, WTI at $48.72 per barrel and natural gas at $2.90 per million BTU (beginning of day 17 March 2017). Here are AOP’s top five stories from the last seven days.

Tullow Oil pushes ahead with Kenya production

After recent oil discoveries made in the Turkana basin, Tullow Oil has signed a production sharing agreement this week with the government to begin producing oil.

As a pipeline still needs to be built, the initial development will follow a roadmap for early oil exports in Kenya by producing 2,000 barrels per day and transporting the oil via trucks to Mombasa, according to the Daily Nation. A pipeline is planned to connect the inland oil fields with the coast, at the port of Lamu.

Tullow Oil also announced today that it was launching a £607 million rights issue at 45 percent discount to lower its debt.

GE selected to power Ghana electricty plant

Amandi Energy, having reached financial close on their plans to build a 200 MW power plant, has selected General Electric to provide the turbine for the combined-cycle power plant, according to a company press release.

The $552 million project will initially be fuelled by light crude oil, but will switch to gas domestically sourced from Ghana’s offshore Sankofa natural gas field once the field is online, according to ESI Africa. The plant will be powered GE’s 9E.04 gas turbine, which has tri-fuel capabilities.

Production begins at Total Rep. Congo project

Total’s Moho Nord deep offshore project in the Republic of the Congo has started production.
Located 75 kilometers offshore Pointe-Noire, the project has a production capacity of 100,000 barrels per day, according to a company press release.

The field development includes 34 wells tied back to a tension leg platform and floating production unit. The oil will be exported via pipeline to an onshore terminal. Total holds a 53.5 percent stake in the project and is the operator. Other partners include Chevron Overseas Congo Limited (31.5 percent) and Société Nationale des Pétroles du Congo (15 percent).

SEC probes BP, Cobalt deal in Angola

US regulator the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has launched a probe into a payment of $350 million to the Angolan government by BP and Cobalt International. Under an agreement between the government and the companies made in 2011, the money was to fund a research center, which has yet to be built, according to the Financial Times. The SEC has “initiated an informal inquiry” to identify if the deal violated anti-corruption laws.

Egypt mega-field to start production in 2017

Eni announced that their Zohr mega gas field offshore Egypt will begin production in December, according to Rigzone. The field, discovered in 2015 and with reserves estimated at 5.5 billion barrels of oil equivalent, is to be developed in stages. If production starts in December, the project will have taken just over two years to come online.

The announcement comes after BP and Rosneft bought into the project, with BP acquiring a 10 percent interest and Rosneft acquiring a 30 percent stake.

Photo courtesy: Heerema Marine Contractors