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West Africa deepwater investments hit $15.6b in 2010

By Roseline Okere

exploration wellsDEEPWATER project investments in West Africa have recorded a ten-fold increase from $1.5 billion, recorded in 2000, to $15.6 billion in 2010.
In the near future, investments are expected to rise even further, as new projects are being developed, such as Bosi in Nigeria, CLOV in Angola and the wider Jubilee area in Ghana.
The Chairman and Managing Director of Mobil Producing Nigeria, Mark Ward, who made this disclosure at the Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists’ third Regional Deepwater Offshore West Africa Conference (DOWAC) in Abuja recently, stated that West Africa was clearly at early stages of deepwater investments.
According to him, throughout 2010, only 250 exploration wells were drilled in comparison to 1000 wells in deepwater Gulf of Mexico.  “Effective exploitation of the West African deepwater hydrocarbon endowment will largely depend on industry’s ability to continuously innovate and utilise technology coupled with the right investment incentives to extend the life of existing plays while also finding new players”.
Ward, who is also the Lead Country Manager, ExxonMobil affiliates in Nigeria, added that over $25 billion of oil equivalent barrels have been discovered in deepwater West Africa since the early nineties.
Nigeria and Angola in particular enjoyed tremendous deepwater exploration success in the 1990s with notable discoveries such as Erha, Bonga, Bosi and Agbami in Nigeria, while Angola had Girassol, Daila, Kissanga and Kizomba.  Many of the early discoveries are currently producing with over 12 world-class floating production storage offloading facilities in the West African region”.
Speaking on the success stories of deepwater production in West Africa, he hinted that from 85,000 barrels of oil per day in 2000, production has risen steadily to 2.5 million barrels of oil per day in 2010, a 30-fold increase.

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