South Sudan, Nigerian Petroleum Ministers discuss oil cooperation
South Sudan Minister of Petroleum Honorable Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth met with his Nigerian counterpart Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, and Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation’s head Dr. Maikanti Baru in Abuja on Tuesday to discuss oil cooperation between both countries.
Minister Gatkuoth shared South Sudan’s hopes that the Revitalized Agreement on Resolution to the conflict in South Sudan, signed in Addis Ababa on August 12 would ensure long-lasting stability and further comfort investors looking at South Sudan’s hydrocarbons industry as their next investment location.
He also reminded his Nigerian counterpart that South Sudan was on track to ramp up production to between 60,000 and 70,000 barrels per day (bpd) from Blocks 1, 2 and 4 by the end of the year, up from the current gross production of 45,000 bpd, and should bring back production to its previous levels of 120,000 bpd by 2019.
He further expressed South Sudan’s interest in enhancing oil cooperation with Nigeria, especially on the investment, policy and technical fronts.
“Nigeria being Africa’s biggest oil producer, we see it like a big brother to us, and one we have a lot to share with and learn from. South Sudan’s oil sector already benefits from the investment of Nigerian companies such as Atlas Oranto and we certainly hope more will come,” he stated.
As South Sudan implements new local content regulations this year, both ministers also discussed mutual experiences in domestic capacity building.
“The Nigerian experience in local content is widely seen as a success across Africa, and learning from Nigeria’s achievements can go a long way in helping to develop a South Sudanese content at home,” Minister Gatkuoth said.
The Nigerian Minister for Petroleum Resources expressed Nigeria’s interest in continuing to explore cooperation opportunities with the South Sudan, and further stated Nigeria’s willingness to offer its experience and knowledge in the oil industry for the benefits of South Sudan and its people.