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Green Energy: Drilling Campaign Pushes Otakikpo Field Output Close to 10,000BOPD

Completion of the first of a two well campaign has pushed production in Otakikpo field, onshore eastern Nigeria, to slightly above 7,000Barrels of Oil Per Day, Africa Oil+Gas Report has learned.

The field was delivering around 4,000BOPD prior to the campaign, according to the top management of Green Energy International Limited (GEIL), operator of the asset.

“We flowed much more than the 3,000BOPD when we tested the well (Otakikpo-4)”, says Anthony Adegbulugbe, a professor of Energy Management who is the company’s chairman and chief executive officer. “We decided to choke it back (to a lower output) to conserve the energy”, he explains. “Another well is coming that will take us to 10,000BOPD”, the CEO says, referring to Otakikpo 5, the second well in the campaign which is currently drilling.

A 3,000BOPD jump in output from one well in a marginal field is quite exceptional in the onshore Niger Delta in the year 2022, going by the downward trend in production in the region all round.

Two other drilling campaigns on similar fields, carried out elsewhere in the Niger Delta in the last six months, have not been this successful, although those fields have longer production histories than Otakikpo.

Nigeria’s crude oil production slumped from 1.4Million barrels per day in January 2022 to 1.08MMBOPD in July 2022, according to data provided by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission. The numbers are still looking for the floor.

Otakikpo field reached 6,000BOPD, at inauguration in the first quarter of 2017 and has slowly declined in the last five and half years. The ongoing campaign is part of a planned phased development which could take the field to 20,000BOPD. But the existing infrastructure can only accommodate 10,000BOPD

As part of Africa Oil+Gas Report’s C-SUITE Interview series, Professor Adegbulugbe fielded a range of questions on GEIL’s journey as an oil and gas producer, highlighting the phased development of Otakikpo field, the company’s host community engagement, and the plans to be an integrated energy provider with a gas processing plant, a crude oil refining facility, an expanded terminal, and other features of an industrial hub. AOGR will be running the full story on both this online newsletter platform and the monthly e-edition of the report.-Editor.




Solen Commences Installation of a 120MW Solar Plant in Gabon’s Estuire Region

Solen Renewable has commenced the installation of a 120 MWp photovoltaic solar power plant, in Ayémé Plaine, located some thirty kilometres from Libreville, capital of Gabon.

The Dubai headquartered company will construct 60 MWp of the solar plant in the first phase, equipped with a 15-hour battery energy storage system.

The second phase of 60 MWp of solar photovoltaic panels, will also be equipped with a 15-hour battery energy storage system.

This will create a 120 MWp solar power plant, spread over a 251-hectare site in the locality of Ayémé Plaine.

The project’s primary objective is to enhance the electricity mix in the Estuaire region, the most populous of Gabon’s nine provinces.  The project will also mitigate the problem of load shedding.

The construction of the Ayémé Plaine solar photovoltaic power plant commences almost six months after the signing of the related framework agreement (in March 2022) between Alain-Claude Bilie-By-Nze, the Gabonese Minister of Energy and Hydraulic Resources, and Praveen Pai, Solen’s Operations Manager.

Solen, which will finance, install and operate the plant, has until July 2023 to deliver the facility.

The company will sell its output to the Gabonese Water and Energy Company (SEEG) for 25 years under a power purchase agreement (PPA). In the long term, the Gabonese government aims to increase the share of renewable energy in its electricity mix to 80% by 2030.



Bouncing back: High-impact well activity set to rebound this year after 2021 slump, Rystad Says

Drilling of high-impact oil and gas prospects is set to rebound this year after a disappointing 2021, when success rates plunged towards record lows, Rystad Energy research shows. These critical wells have found hydrocarbons 47% of the time so far this year, up from a measly 28% for 2021. With more than four months still to go in 2022, discovered volumes from high-impact wells have nearly quadrupled to over 1.7 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) – a positive sign for global hydrocarbon supply.

A total of 33 high-impact wells are set to be drilled this year, the largest annual number since Rystad Energy started tracking the sector in 2015. This is only slightly more than last year’s 29 high-impact probes, which only yielded 450 million boe because of the low success rate.

Rystad Energy classifies high-impact wells through a combination of factors, including the size of the prospect, whether they would unlock new hydrocarbon resources in frontier areas or emerging basins, and their significance to the operator.

Bucking recent trends, discovered liquids have accounted for 1.2 billion boe or almost 70% of the volumes this year, while gas discoveries total about 550 million boe. In previous years, gas discoveries have vastly outnumbered liquids volumes. This year’s reversal is mainly due to two significant oil offshore discoveries in Namibia – TotalEnergies’ Venus and Shell’s Graff.

“Last year was disappointing for discovering gas and liquid volumes from high-impact wells, but 2022 is on track to make up for that slump. If the success rate seen in the first half of 2022 holds for the full year, we could be in for one of the most productive annual volumes total on record,” says Rystad Energy senior analyst Taiyab Zain Shariff.

Of the 33 expected high-impact wells this year, 19 have already been completed, four are in progress, and 10 are scheduled to be completed before next year. More than half of the wells drilled so far in 2022 are considered a “focus for the company,” indicating that more operators are narrowing their geographical range of exploration and focusing on core regions instead of frontier areas.

The global oil majors and other exploration and production companies account for more than 60% of the high-impact wells completed this year. Majors have drilled eight high-impact wells, of which four resulted in commercial discoveries: TotalEnergies’ Venus and Shell’s Graff oil discoveries in Namibia, ExxonMobil’s Fangtooth oil find in Guyana, and Eni’s XG-002 gas discovery in the UAE.

More than 45% of wells completed so far in 2022 are in South America and Africa, followed by Australia and Europe with 16% each of completed wells. By individual country, Australia accounted for the most completed high-impact wells with three, followed by Guyana and Namibia with two wells each.

Of the 19 high-impact wells completed this year, 47% resulted in a commercial discovery, with the rest either dry or uncommercial and one still awaiting results. Only one find was a pure oil discovery, while the rest were either gas or liquids with associated gas. This year’s success rate is almost equivalent to 2020, which was one of the most successful years in volumes from high-impact wells.

We expect 14 high-impact wells to be completed or spudded for the rest of this year, six of them by majors. Eni operates two of the four high-impact wells currently being drilled. The first is the Cronos-1 well in Block 6 off Cyprus, which is drilled at a water depth of around 2,350 meters targeting a Cretaceous play. The other is the Dan Tranh-1X well in Block 115/09 off Indonesia, targeting a newly identified Miocene play in the emerging Song Hong Basin. The other two in-progress wells are the much-awaited, play-opening Rencong well operated by Repsol in the Andaman-III block off Indonesia, and Shell’s Jaca-1 well in Block 6 in the frontier Rio Muni basin of Sao Tome & Principe. That well reached its total depth last week and is undergoing completion and evaluation.

The rest of the wells planned for this year are distributed throughout Africa and the Americas, with some exciting wildcats to watch in Southeast Asia as well. Most of these are classified “focus for the company,” followed by wells in frontier basins. The frontier wildcats will be interesting to watch as they may open entirely new petroleum regions. These include Kuwait’s first offshore probe in 32 years, where Halliburton has a contract to drill six high-pressure, high-temperature (HP/HT) exploration wells for state-owned Kuwait Petroleum Corporation. If successful, this campaign could help restart Kuwait’s offshore legacy fields after a long hiatus.

For more analysis, insights and reports, clients and non-clients can apply for access to Rystad Energy’s Free Solutions and get a taste of our data and analytics universe.


Taiyab Zain Shariff
Senior Analyst
Phone: +91 97 42 06 16 16

Elliot Busby
Media Relations Manager
Phone: +1 708 513 4214

About Rystad Energy
Rystad Energy is an independent energy research and business intelligence company providing data, tools, analytics and consultancy services to the global energy industry. Our products and services cover energy fundamentals and the global and regional upstream, oilfield services and renewable energy industries, tailored to analysts, managers and executives alike. Rystad Energy’s headquarters are located in Oslo, Norway with offices in London, New York, Houston, Aberdeen, Stavanger, Moscow, Rio de Janeiro, Singapore, Bangalore, Tokyo, Sydney and Dubai.

Elliot Busby

Media Relations Manager



ENI will Start Small with Tango FLNG, Then Add a Bigger Floater

The Tango Floating LNG vessel that ENI has acquired with its purchase of Export LNG Ltd can only process 0.6Million tons per year, or a fifth of the 3Million Tons Per Annum (3MMTPA) the Italian giant expects to produce, at peak, from Congo’s Marine XII project, where the facility will be deployed.

ENI is now scouting around for larger vessels, while the Tango FLNG commences activity in the second half of 2023, following the completion of mooring and connection works necessary to tie with the Marine XII network and infrastructure.

ENI is keen on tallying up gas projects all over as many of its African fields as possible, to ensure that Italian gas market is adequately served in the wake of the reduction of Russian gas supply to Europe.

“We are increasing our gas production and will send to Italy and southern Europe all the gas we have found,” ENI’s CEO Claudio Descalzi said in May 2022.

“The acquisition of this facility (Tango FLNG) allows the development of a fast-track model capable of seizing the opportunities of the LNG market”, ENI said in a statement, adding that “the high flexibility and mobility characteristics of the Tango FLNG will favour the development and enhancement of ENI’s equity gas by accelerating production start-up time”.

The Tango FLNG, built in 2017, has a treatment capacity of approximately 3Million standard cubic meters/day and an LNG production capacity of approximately 0.6Million tons per year (about 1 billion standard cubic meters/year), h whereas the Marine XII project, when fully operational it will provide volumes in excess of 3Million tons/year (over 4.5 billion cubic meters/year).

Did the Prophet Promise an Oilfield?


By Tim Cocks

Uju herself was a ‘top contributor’, who had donated many thousands of dollars over the years. As a result, she had often had communion with Prophet T.B. Joshua in private. Each time, she had felt his power, and had often been shocked by his clairvoyance. But on one Sunday in particular, the Prophet said something that would change the course of her life forever.

Uju climbed the stairs to the waiting room of his inner sanc­tum. T.B. Joshua’s VIP room looks strangely like a kitsched-up corporate boardroom: it has a long, excessively polished table in the middle lined with leather chairs. On each wall, a TV projects his Emmanuel TV satellite station: a feast of Joshua’s best ser­mons and most dramatic demon deliveries, the possessed shaking and dribbling like poison victims. There are Chinese plastic flowers on the ornate faux-ebony table. The lighting is low but still somehow white and harsh. Uju sat down in the VIP room and waited for the Prophet to appear, exuding her usual confidence.

‘And how are you?’ the Prophet asked as she entered his office to greet him. He had his usual warm and slightly mischievous smile. T.B. Joshua had a round, handsome face and cheeks that bulged over his cheekbones and gave him a permanently childlike expression. This, combined with his small nose, intense narrow eyes and grin full of perfectly straight white teeth, lent him a warmth that could be very disarming. Uju had first come to him years ago when her mother was in a wheelchair after suffering a stroke. It had taken almost a year, but eventually the Prophet healed her. She had risen up out of that chair and walked.

‘I am fine, Pastor Joshua, and yourself?’

‘We thank God. Please take a seat. The good Lord has spo­ken. I have a prophecy for you.’

T.B. Joshua’s prophecy was this: ‘That God will make you the centre of your world.’

This cryptic phrase uttered, he paused for a moment, then he waved her away and prepared for the next VIP.

Now, a less devout soul might have been dismayed at this point: no further detail, no hint of

What it could possibly mean. Just a vague prophesy with all the precision of a newspaper horoscope. But Uju knew right then what she had to do: she would become the boss of her own oil company. She had always thought she could succeed, but all this time she had never Iistened to her calling. God will make you the centre of your world  What else could that mean?

Monday morning. The sun was only just rising, and the palm and mango trees were alive with screeching insects, but already Uju was awake, excited about what she was about to do.

By mid-morning at the office, before she’d even finished her sugary Nescafe with powdered milk, Uju was drafting her resig­nation letter giving her month’s notice to Chevron-Texaco. Her pen hovered over the signature. Could she really give up every­thing and plunge into such a risky venture?

Excerpted from Lagos: Supernatural City, by Tim Cocks, published in 2022 by Hurst & Company, London

South Africa Pushes Away Karpower Gas to Power Project

Turkish owned Karpowership is still unable to get anywhere close to an approval to install a 1,200Megawatt power facility off the South African coast, despite its winning a bid run by the country’s Ministry of Energy.

The project is held up in the crucial environmental approval stage.

Three subsidiaries of the Karpowership Group Karpowership SA Coega, Karpowership SA Richards Bay, Karpowership SA Saldanha, were among the eight preferred bidders announced on March 18, 2021, for the Risk Mitigation IPP (RMIPP) Procurement Programme, aimed at procuring 2,000MW of power to bridge a looming electricity supply gap.

The power-ship companies were to generate 1,220MW of power from imported Liquefied Natural Gas  (LNG), in what was to be the first formal introduction of natural gas into the country’s electricity grid, through Eskom, the state utility.

But Environmental authorisation for the project was denied in June 2021.

The denial of the latest appeal was made public on August 1, 2022.

This is all contrary to the spirit of the bidding process.  “The projects are required to reach financial close by the end of July 2021”, the Ministry of Minerals and Energy said at the time the preferred bidders were announced. “Due to the urgency to bring power online, this date is not negotiable. It is for the preferred bidders to manage all the risks to reach financial close. First power from the projects is expected in August 2022”.

In denying the appeal, Barbara Creecy, South Africa’s Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, said she had “the constitutional and legal obligation not to allow a preventable situation in an environment that may potentially harm the health or well-being, in a wide sense, of another person or persons. The need and desirability of a proposed project should also be considered in this context.”

Ms. Creecy’s department has criticised gaps in the group’s consultation processes. It said that requirements were not met, including public participation and the proper evaluation of the potential effects on the environment as well as socioeconomic conditions.

It added that the potential environmental impact of the project could not be properly evaluated because of the lack of a proper underwater noise study and significant gaps and limitations with other assessments. “The final environmental assessment report was not always entirely convincing in dismissing concerns around heated seawater discharges, which could result in temperature increases of up to 15°C in the vicinity of the powerships,” the Minister explained.




TOTAL’s South African Gas Project Likely to be Assailed by Activists

By Toyin Akinosho

TOTALEnergies expects to sign a head of agreement with Petroleum Agency South Africa (PASA) in late August and apply for production licence for its Brulpadda -Liuperd gas project by September 2022, but the likelihood that the project will have a smooth ride to delivery in 2025 is far from certain.

The Brulpadda -Liuperd gas and condensate reserves are located in Block 11B/12B in the deepwater Outeniqua Basin, 175km offshore off the coast of the Western Cape; just the right place and context that the country’s passionate, well-funded, environmental activists will likely choose to hold it up.

The plan is to pump the gas to the 200Million standard cubic feet per day (200MMscf/d) Gas To Liquids Plant operated by state hydrocarbon firm PetroSA at Mossel Bay also in the Western Cape.

TOTALEnergies application for production licence “is almost certainly something which will be subjected to legal opposition from climate justice groups and nongovernmental organisations opposed to the development of the gas reserves”, reports, a South African online newspaper.

“The barrage of legal cases against fossil fuel projects is a significant concern for the Central Energy Fund CEF, the state energy parastatal”, EWN reports, quoting Ayanda Noah CEF’s Chief Executive who is looking forward to working with TOTALEnergies on the project. “There is litigation just from all angles. In fact, I think all our oil and gas projects – there’s litigation on all of them, which is a challenge,” she says

TOTALEnergies estimates around 3.4Trillion cubic feet and 200Million barrels of condensates of recoverable reserves in the two fields.

Ayanda Noah told Fin24 in an exclusive interview. “The plant needs to be upgraded. That work will have to be done, and I believe it will take about 12 to 18 months. The gas is coming in about 2024 to 2025 – so it’s literally around the corner.

But just a week ago, Barbara Creecy, the South African Minister of Forestry Fisheries and the Environment shot down a second appeal by the Turkish Karpowership group for ship-mounted gas-fired power plants at harbours in Richards Bay, Ngqura and Saldanha Bay, saying that the country’s desperate need for power should not come at the expense of the Constitution or the environment, and subsequently human beings.

Ms. Creecy’s decision fits a pattern of anti-hydrocarbon activism in South Africa.

TOTALEnergies has been, indeed, an exception to the rule. Last February the Western Cape high court ruled, in favour of fishing communities on the West Coast, against Searcher Seismic’s proposed multiclient survey, planned to acquire  10,000 sq km of three dimensional (3D) and around 22,014 km of 2D seismic data, over a number of blocks in the west and southwest coasts of South Africa, covering the Outeniqua Basin and its sub-basins, including Bredasdorp, Infanta, Pletmos, Gamtoos, Algoa and Southern Outeniqua Basins.

That ruling came about 40 days after Shell lost its bid to appeal an interdict granted to Wild Coast small-scale fisher communities opposed to its 3D seismic survey. The Australia-based Seismic Searcher decided to discontinue pursuing the case and announced the immediate demobilization of its survey vessel, the BGP Pioneer.

ENI has also had challenges with activists against its plans to explore off the Kwazulu Natal, right in the Indian Ocean.


Azule Energy: Can the union of Two Majors be termed an Independent?

By Adeniyi Adeoloye

Mergers in the oil industry have a long history. The break-up of Standard Oil and the attendant amalgamations of forerunner companies to forming the 7 sisters are perfect examples of mergers in the days of old. When they are done, such coalitions allow partnering companies to pull resources together to deepen expertise and grow competitive advantage. This thinking is reinforced by Claudio Descalzi, CEO of the Italian major ENI with his take on the creation of Azule Energy – “a new, strong entity is born, which combines our experience, skills and technologies with those of our partner bp, putting them at the service of the development of Angolan energy resources, with a priority commitment to environmental protection and the growth of the economy.”

Many mergers have happened in the oil industry, but most have been in such a way that the union is recorded across the global operations of the entities concerned. So it is interesting to see Azule Energy, a child of two European majors after combining their entire operations in Angola, to mint a new company, with both parties having 50:50 equity shares have a merger that is only limited to Angola and no other jurisdictions where bp and ENI operates.

Before the coming together, bp’s entire production in the year 2021 was roughly 100,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day(BOEPD), whilst ENI, its equity partner in Azule Energy did 120,000BOEPD. Prior, French major, TOTALEnergies prided herself as number one operator in Angola given her output of 175,000BOEPD 2021, 212,000BOEPD in 2020 and 232,000BOEPD in 2019. The 2021 production of TotalEnergies is some 17% decrease compared to her output in year 2020 and a further 24% contraction in contrast to the throughput of 2019.

The newly formed Azule Energy which claims to be Angola largest independent holds 2 billion barrels of net resources with an ambition to grow production to 250kboe/d in the next five years from the current net of  about 220kboe/d that was produced by Eni and bp in 2021.

Going by the average production of TOTALEnergies in Angola between 2019 and 2021, and particularly if it ramps up production to hit the scope of what it achieved in 2019; in addition to projects it is having in the pipeline like Begonia whose FID has been taken and commissioning expected in 2024 with planned output of 30,000BOPD, the Quiluma and Maboqueiro non associated natural gas projects with first gas scheduled for 2026, and the ramping up of Zinia phase 2 project to pump 40,000 bopd, it is clear that the claim to leadership by the newly minted Azule Energy’s  total production will be severely tested, if not pushed aside by o the French energy giant by 2027, when Azule is looking to achieve 250,000BOEPD. Could this be why bp and ENI chose to call their new company “Angola’s largest independent”?

Adeoloye,  a Dublin based petroleum geoscientist, is a frequent contributor to Africa Oil+Gas Report


Seplat/ExxonMobil Deal: Intra Government Public Spat Projects Poor Optics for Investment  

By the Editorial Board of Africa Oil+Gas Report

The public exhibition of disagreement between various agencies of the Nigerian government over the ExxonMobil/Seplat Energy share acquisition reinforces a troubling image for the country’s investment climate.

In the space of three hours, three press releases had gone out to the media, two of them declaring that ministerial consent had been granted and one clearly saying ‘no’ with some ambiguity.

In the afternoon of August 8, 2022, a press statement by the media aide to President Muhammadu Buhari declared that the president, as Minister of Petroleum Resources, had “consented to the acquisition of ExxonMobil shares in the United States of America by Seplat Energy Offshore Limited”.

That statement, coming from the office of the highest office in the land, seemed so sacrosanct that industry watchers were declaring victory for orderly exit of International Oil Companies from the Nigerian E& sector.

A ministerial consent for E&P asset sale, delivered in six months, would be one of the fastest in Nigeria’s recent history.

The content of the statement from the Presidency was the core material in the news stories by global news agencies Bloomberg and Reuters.

Seplat Energy’s external affairs directorate corroborated the Presidency statement, but in what must be seen as an important data point, the company’s statement declared it had received “a letter from the Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources notifying Seplat Energy that His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari has graciously approved that Ministerial Consent be granted to Seplat Energy Offshore Limited’s cash acquisition of the entire share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited from its shareholders, Mobil Development Nigeria Inc and Mobil Exploration Nigeria Inc, being entities of Exxon Mobil Corporation registered in Delaware, USA (ExxonMobil).

So there. There had been a statement from the presidency and a letter from the Minister of State for Petroleum.

But just about the close of business, the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) sent out a statement that at once contradicted those from the Presidency and the Minister of State but left open, doubts as to the conclusion of the transaction. “The Chief Executive of the NUPRC Engr. Gbenga Komolafe clarified that the Commission in line with the provisions of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021 is the sole regulator in dealing with such matters in the Nigerian upstream sector”, the Commission stated, adding, “the issue at stake is purely a regulatory matter and the Commission had earlier communicated the decline of Ministerial assent to ExxonMobil in this regard. As such the Commission further affirms that the status quo remains”.

Even as the Commission talked of commitment “to ensuring predictable and conducive regulatory environment at all times in the Nigerian upstream sector”, it is hard for anyone to read its statement, check with the others, and conclude that this is a “predictable regulatory environment”.




The 7th Mozambique Gas & Energy Summit & Exhibition


The 7th Mozambique Gas & Energy Summit & Exhibition, which is officially endorsed by the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy Mozambique (MIREME) and co-organised in partnership with ENH, will take place in-person from 14 – 15 September 2022 at the Joaquim Chissano International Conference Center in Maputo.

From 14 – 15 September 2022 the Mozambique Gas & Energy Summit & Exhibition will reconvene key Mozambican Government, Ministerial and industry stakeholders with international investors, project developers, and private sector value chain participants to engage in G2G, G2B and B2B networking, develop bilateral and local partnerships and exchange knowledge and best practices.

Download the event brochure today to find out more:

#MGES #MozambiqueGasEnergySummit #dmgevents

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Welcome To The 7th Mozambique Gas & Energy Summit & Exhibition

The 7th Mozambique Gas & Energy Summit & Exhibition will take place in person on 14 – 15 September 2022 at the Joaquim Chissano International Conference Center in Maputo, convening national and international energy industry leaders to discuss policies, project developments and the energy transition with the Government of Mozambique, IOCs, NOCs and SMEs.

The event promotes the development of local content, with an international, high visibility conference and exhibition that enhances the development of SMEs and entrepreneurship in the country as well as serving as a platform to share updates on policy and regulation and information on financial support opportunities available for start-ups in Mozambique.

To secure your participation and to get involved, visit:

#MGES #MozambiqueGasEnergySummit #dmgevents

Partner with us

The 7th Mozambique Gas & Energy Summit & Exhibition, which is officially endorsed by the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy Mozambique (MIREME) and co-organised in partnership with ENH, will take place in-person from 14 – 15 September 2022 at the Joaquim Chissano International Conference Center in Maputo.

Meet and build relations with over 3000 industry professionals working and collaborating to evolve the Mozambican energy landscape to ensure long-term future success for the country and its citizens within the global energy community.

To secure your participation and find out more, visit:

#MGES #MozambiqueGasEnergySummit #dmgevents


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