Africa Oil & Gas: Total dreams bigger in the continent

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Total aims higher in Africa

Total expects final investment decisions (FIDs) for 495,000 bpd of production from sub-Saharan Africa in the next 18 months, the company said on February 9. The company intends to approve four African projects in the period, of a total of 10 overall, which have 1.37 million bpd of capacity.

The largest African project being considered is the Lake Albert development in Uganda, which has total capacity of 230,000 bpd. The French company will have a 54.9% stake in Lake Albert, following the closing of its acquisition of equity from its partner, Tullow Oil. This is the second largest of Total’s global planned developments, losing the top spot to Iran’s South Pars 11, which has 370,000 boepd of capacity.

The Bonga South West project is also on Total’s list. This Nigerian project has stated capacity of 180,000 bpd, in which Total has a 12.5% stake. The Bonga addition is operated by Royal Dutch Shell. It had been expected to be approved in 2016 but Shell has opted to delay it in order to cut costs. In recent days, talk has emerged of progress on the tender for a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) unit on the field.

The other two projects are satellite extensions to existing projects, being Zinia 2 in Angola and Ikike in Nigeria. Costs on Zinia 2 have been substantially reduced, the company said, falling from US$2.8 billion to US$1.4 billion. The Ikike platform will be tied back to the Amenam facility, with Technip having completed the front-end engineering and design (FEED) work in August 2014.

In the company’s fourth quarter results, Total noted production had increased by 4.7% year on year, with the Angola LNG and Moho Phase 1b projects playing a role in that increase. However, as a result of a reduction in its expected gas price for the coming years, Total recorded an impairment on the Angolan project.

Total also highlighted the Owowo discovery in Nigeria. The Owowo-3 well was drilled in September and ExxonMobil, in October, said the field may hold 500 million to 1 billion barrels of oil.(source: OILPRO)

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