Algeria oil and gas output ‘moving back to growth’

Algeria oil and gas outputState-owned energy company Sonatrach has stated that Algeria’s oil and gas output is moving back to growth after years of stagnation, helped in part by increased production at existing fields

A report by the company showed that oil output in the country will reach 69mn tonnes of oil equivalent (mtoe) in 2016, against 67mn tonnes last year, while gas production will rise to 132.2bn cu/m from 128.3b cu/m in 2015 and 130.9bn cu/m in 2014.

“The era of stagnation is behind us and we are now in a phase of growth,” Sonatrach chief Amine Mazouzi said.

Although affected by low global oil prices and last year’s near-50 per cent drop in energy revenue that accounts for more than 60 per cent of Algeria’s budget, the industry has managed to bounce back.

Sonatrach, however, has invested to stabilise and increase production at its mature fields and expects to bring five new gas fields online in the south of the country over the next few years.

The report stated that gas output is expected to reach 141.3bn cu/m in 2017, 143.9bn cu/m in 2018, 150bn cu/m in 2019 and 165bn cu/m in 2020. Oil output is expected to reach 75 mtoe in 2017, 75 mtoe in 2018, 77 mtoe in 2019 and 82 mtoe in 2020.

Italy’s Eni almost doubled its imports of gas from Algeria to 11.5 bcm in 2015, compared with only 6 bcm in 2014, Sonatrach said. It also noted that about 30 international companies are present in Algeria’s oil and gas market, including Eni, Anadarko, BP, Cepsa, Shell, Statoil and Sinopec.

Two previous bidding rounds for oil and gas fields failed to attract a lot of interest. However, Sonatrach stated that it will start direct bilateral talks with companies in an effort to jumpstart investment.

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