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Promoted from the ranks to lead the company he originally joined in 1984, Sonatrach chairman and chief executive Rachid Hachichi is struggling to convince Algerians their state energy giant can overcome corruption and win investment without compromising national interests. With politics still in ferment, a weak interim government hopes to pass a revised hydrocarbons law as soon as 15 November – before controversial presidential elections are held on 12 December.

Algeria
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Prime minister Hailemariam Desalegn formally inaugurated the 120MW Ashegoda wind farm on 26 October. The wind farm, which started commissioning a year ago, was developed by France’s Vergnet, which signed a contract with Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCo) in October 2008. Lahmeyer carried out feasibility studies and supervised construction. Financing for the €210m ($272m) project was provided by €113m of buyer credit from Compagnie Française d’Assurance pour le Commerce Extérieur, a €45m concessional loan from the Agence Française de Développement, and a €33m tied commercial loan from BNP Paribas. EEPCo provided €19m in local currency.

Ethiopia
Issue 224 - 02 February 2012

GE plans 100MW wind farm at Ngong

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US conglomerate GE has announced plans to develop a 100MW wind farm in Ngong, 20km south-west of Nairobi. GE chairman and chief executive Jeffrey Immelt told reporters in Nairobi that a strategic memorandum of understanding would be signed between GE and the Kenya government GE plans 100MW wind farm at Ngong

Kenya
Issue 268 - 20 December 2013

Mauritania: Repsol drills on Ta10

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Operator Repsol has spudded the first exploration well in onshore Block Ta10 in the Taoudeni Basin. Partner RWE Dea said the Ouguiya-1 well was being drilled by the Saipem 5893 drilling rig. Its primary targets are Precambrian formations, and the well is scheduled to be completed in Q2 2014. “We are very pleased that, together with our partner, we have commenced this well, which is both challenging from an engineering point as well as being of great interest in geological terms,” said RWE senior vice-president exploration Werner Schwarzhans.

Mauritania
Issue 268 - 20 December 2013

Ghana: Wood Group finds local partner

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Energy services company Wood Group has signed a memorandum of understanding with Ghanaian company Hydra Offshore to explore opportunities to provide subsea engineering services to local operators. The Aberdeen-based company said the collaboration would combine the strengths of Hydra Offshore’s subsea engineering capabilities with the technical experience, capability, technology and technical assurance of Wood Group’s global oil and gas business. Hydra is a wholly Ghanaian-owned company providing offshore and subsea engineering services to the oil and gas industry in Ghana.

Ghana
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France’s Eranove Group in partnership with Gabon’s state investment fund Fonds Gabonais d’Investissements Stratégiques (FGIS) invites expressions of interest by 30 April from engineering firms to prepare detailed design studies and assist with the project management for the Dibwangui hydropower project on the Louetsi River in the south-eastern region of Ngounié. The low-head project, with an estimated installed capacity of around 15MW, is to be developed by Eranove on a build-own-operate-transfer basis under a 30-year concession signed with FGIS in October 2016.

Gabon
Issue 148 - 17 October 2008

Kosmos seeks more credit for Jubilee

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Kosmos Energy would like more credit for Ghana’s Jubilee field, writes Our Accra Correspondent. Chairman James Musselman argued that his team of Triton Energy veterans who discovered and developed Equatorial Guinea’s deep-water Ceiba field had the experience that field operator Tullow Oil lacked.

Ghana | Equatorial Guinea
Issue 246 - 17 January 2013

AfDB supports Comoros power reform

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The African Development Bank (AfDB) board on 19 December agreed a $3m loan to Comoros to support energy sector reforms, particularly for electricity and financial governance. The reforms aim to strengthen the governance and performance of the energy sector so that it can support the country’s economic development, and to encourage the state to consolidate and deepen the reform of public finance management.

Comoros
Issue 380 - 08 November 2018

Moroccan budget woes drive asset sale

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Recently appointed finance minister Mohammed Benchaâboun is tackling Morocco’s burgeoning budget deficit with reforms that some local observers are calling Thatcherite. The former banker expects to raise funds by divesting the state’s remaining saleable assets, with major privatisations for the first time in a decade.

Morocco
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APR Energy faces a significant challenge in removing its temporary power generation equipment from Libya. The company has ten 25MW gas turbine units located at Al-Furnaj in south-eastern Tripoli, Zlitan and Al-Khums on the coast, and Samnu, north-east of Sabha. It also has a further 200MW of diesel generation units installed in Tripoli and at Um Al-Jadwal, south of Sabha. Most of the territory in which the units are installed is under the control of groups allied to the unrecognised Tripoli-based government.

Libya
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PA Resources and EnQuest have dropped farm-out plans for the Didon field and Zarat permit after the government failed to give its approval. The news comes as PA Resources plans a shareholder meeting on 27 February to decide whether it should go into liquidation. In May 2013, the companies signed agreements for the transfer of 70% in the Didon producing oilfield and the Zarat permit to EnQuest. In July 2014, PA and EnQuest completed the Didon transaction and put the sale proceeds in escrow awaiting a letter of non-objection from the Tunisian authorities.

Tunisia
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Despite restarting production on 21 October after securing bank letters of credit to purchase a 600,000 barrel crude consignment from Nigeria, the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) continues to operate at well below its 45,000b/d capacity. The refinery has been closed three times since reopening in April 2013, following an eight-month shutdown from mid-2012. TOR public affairs manager Aba Lokko told African Energy the refinery would continue to operate at 28,000 b/d until it received $37.7m from the government, the second tranche of a promised $67.7m finance package to rehabilitate the facility and boost capacity.

Ghana
Issue 158 - 06 March 2009

COMPANIES AND PEOPLE: Baraka, Vaalco

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BARAKA PETROLEUM: Recapitalisation and restructuring; VAALCO: Gabon well plugged, other drilling continues

Mauritania | Gabon
Free

As the East African hydrocarbons race heats up, Tanzania has found bidders for four onshore blocks, but in opening up a new oil province they will have to consider the needs of local communities and the country’s vital tourist industry, writes Thalia Griffiths.

Tanzania
Free

Well before President Abdelaziz Bouteflika emerged predictably triumphant from his campaign to win a fourth term of office, in which the zaïm (charismatic leader) himself player virtually no part, the talk among the Algerian political elite and many of their business partners was of ‘transition’. The enfeebled president was hardly able to function following his stroke last year, underlined by his halting performance taking the oath of office on 28 April; but there was consensus within the ruling elite that the Bouteflika IV administration would herald a period of transition, modernising the apparatus of state and functioning of the economy.

Algeria