Four Large African Oil Projects for Sanction in 2018

Tullow Oil

By Toyin Akinosho

Nigeria is the site of two of Africa’s four largest greenfield oil developments on queue for Final Investment Decision in 2018.
The remaining two are each located in landlocked Uganda and offshore Senegal.

The most certain to take FID of the four is the Ugandan Albert Basin oilfield development, which had been on the drawing board for nine years. Now TOTAL, which has 44% equity in that development, is also the lead operator. The Albert basin development will deliver 230,000 barrels of oil per day BOPD at peak. The sanction announcement is expected be made any time before the end of the First Quarter 2018.

The two Nigerian projects in sight of FID are in deepwater.

So is the Senegalese project.

The Nigerian developments include the Shell operated Bonga South West-Aparo(BSWAP), located in 1,200metres of water in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 118 and the ENI led Zabazaba field, sited in 2,000metre Water Depth in Oil Prospecting Lease (OPL) 245.

BSWAP’s sanction is challenged by licence expiry issues while the Zabababa project, which is clearly ahead of BSWAP, is dogged by legal challenges in European courts on account of alleged improper payments in the process of the purchase of stakes in OPL 245 from Malabu Oil, the licence holder. BSWAP and Zabazaba will each deliver at least 120,000BOPD at peak.

Far less certain to take FID in 2018 is the SNE field, located in 1,100metre Water Depth in the Rufisque, Sangomar and Sangomar Deep Blocks, offshore Senegal. Still at concept selection stage, operator Cairn Energy insists that FID can be taken in 2018, and has fixed the date in its work programme calendar since it announced the commercial viability of the project in September 2016. But it still has to do the Front End Engineering Design (FEED) and submit a plan of development to the Senegalese Government. Production from SNE is expected to peak at 140,000BOPD.

Full details of 2018 Projects around Africa, including this author’s Kickstarter article: ‘Pregnant with Projects’ and the editorial survey: ‘Who Is Doing What and Where in 2018?’ are available in this link.



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