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Ophir Energy has given Australia’s WorleyParsons a contract to provide engineering and project management services for the Fortuna project on Block R, as well as a master services agreement to provide engineering support to any of Ophir’s worldwide assets. Ophir plans to develop Block R’s gas reserves through a 3m t/yr floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility – which could be Africa’s first floating LNG project, provided it starts up before other projects mooted for Cameroon, Mozambique and elsewhere. WorleyParsons and its specialist deep-water division Intecsea will oversee the front-end engineering design scopes and tendering

Equatorial Guinea
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The much delayed Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) is undergoing yet another drafting, and is expected to be submitted to the presidency “within the next six to eight weeks”, petroleum minister Diezani Alison-Madueke said on 21 February. She told CWC’s Nigerian Oil and Gas conference in Abuja the bill would then be passed to the national assembly for debate.

Nigeria
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Operator Tullow Oil has announced a fourth discovery in the South Lokichar Basin with the Ekales-1 exploration well in Block 13T. The well was drilled between the Ngamia and Twiga South discoveries and encountered potential oil pay in the Auwerwer and Upper Lokone sandstone reservoirs of between 60 and 100 metres. 
Once operations have completed, the rig will move to drill the Amosing-1 exploration well, south of Ngamia-1. The Agete-1 well, 7km north of Twiga South, began drilling on 16 September along the same ‘string of pearls’ basin bounding fault trend, and a third rig will be operational in Kenya by year-end.

Kenya
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Plans for a big East African regional pipeline may take some time to get off the ground, but Tanzania pioneer Aminex is hopeful it can develop significant reserves of gas with a relatively simple infrastructure

Tanzania
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ALGERIA: Gulf Keystone gas find ANGOLA: Cabinda South drilling LIBYA: Eni charter MADAGASCAR: Aminex pulls out; MADAGASCAR: Chinese partners; MAURITANIA: RWE farms into onshore; MAURITANIA: Chinguetti drilling; MOZAMBIQUE: Indians plan Rovuma farm-ins; SIERRA LEONE: Elixir completes seismic; TUNISIA: Al Thani rig contract

Mozambique | Angola | Mauritania | Sierra Leone | Madagascar | Libya | Algeria | Tunisia
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BP announced on 10 May that it has started gas production from the first two fields of the West Nile Delta development, Taurus and Libra. BP said the project was delivered eight months ahead of schedule and under budget. First gas was exported to the grid on 24 March and the commissioning of all nine wells of the development’s first two fields and ramp-up to stable operations has now been completed.

Egypt
Issue 183 - 26 March 2010

BG GROUP: New Egypt head

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BG has named Dr Arshad Sufi as president and general manager for BG Egypt, replacing Tim Blackford

Egypt
Issue 135 - 28 March 2008

Hyperdynamics launches 2D

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US-based Hyperdynamics says the government has given the go-ahead for offshore seismic acquisition, even though it is reviewing its 2006 production-sharing contract. Calgary-based Geophysical Service Incorporated is acquiring 2D seismic as a first phase of a multi-client contract for 2D and 3D seismic.

Guinea
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Ghana launched its first upstream oil licensing round on 15 October, offering six offshore blocks with the aim of bringing fresh exploration and development impetus to West Africa’s newest oil exporter. At a time of rising crude prices and ongoing uncertainty over the direction of new petroleum policy in regional oil superpower Nigeria, the round’s timing could not have been better, but rather than the usual upbeat bid round launch message stressing Ghana’s upstream potential and generous fiscal terms, President Nana Akufo-Addo used the launch event to warn existing licenceholders that they needed to step up the pace of exploration.

Ghana
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While much has been made of the push by Gulf-based companies into African and other frontier exploration and production (E&P) territories, establishing themselves in unfamiliar environments has proved more problematic than many thought. One example is Qatar Petroleum

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Morocco is quietly hoping that drilling next year will prove up significant amounts of gas offshore and reduce its dependence on costly imports, writes Nadine Marroushi in Marrakech

Morocco
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The US Treasury on 21 December placed sanctions on Israeli businessman Dan Gertler, a close business associate of President Joseph Kabila whose substantial mining and oil interests in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have long been controversial. The Treasury said Gertler had amassed his fortune through hundreds of millions of dollars worth of opaque and corrupt mining and oil deals in the DRC.

DR Congo
Issue 304 - 11 July 2015

Egypt: IFC invests in Pico

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The World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) is providing a $50m loan to Cheiron Finance Limited, a subsidiary of Egypt’s Pico International Petroleum, in an effort to bolster domestic energy supplies. The loan is part of a $200m financing package arranged by IFC, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and HSBC. It will help Pico, one of Egypt’s leading independent producers, expand operations and optimise production at its oil and gas fields in the Gulf of Suez. Those fields help supply Egypt’s oil and natural gas-fired power plants, which provide the vast majority of the country’s electricity.

Egypt
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The scale of the Mamba South discovery announced by Italian major Eni wasn’t such a shock after Anadarko Petroleum Corporation’s upbeat reporting of its Barquentine-2 appraisal well, which has shown that northern Mozambique could become a major gas producer, just as northern neighbour Tanzania is shaping up to be

Mozambique
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Operator Total is drilling the long-awaited Brulpadda-1AX re-entry well targeting a 1bn barrel prospective resource. The well, on Block 11B/12B in the Outeniqua Basin some 175km off the southern coast, was suspended in 2014 because of the strong Agulhas current. This time, Total has designed a special riser tension system for the well to resist the challenging sea conditions. A discovery would spark interest in the potential of South Africa’s offshore after a lengthy period of uncertainty over the licensing regime.

South Africa