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Chinese to Launch New Exploration in Sudan

Source: SudanTribune 9/9/2015, Location: Africa

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Sudan announced that China will explore for oil and gas in the Red Sea, Sinnar, and West Kordofan. China is the largest foreign investor in Sudan, which hosts China’s biggest investment in the African continent. Last week President Omer al-Bashir and Chinese President Xi Jinping signed a bilateral strategic partnership, including an agreement for production of natural gas in Sinnar State.

Sudanese oil and gas minister Mohamed Zayed Awad confirmed that China had agreed to embark on new oil explorations and to expand its oil operations in Sudan.

“China will start gas production in zone 15 in the Red Sea, in zone 4, known as Baleela field, and zone 6 north of Heglig in West Kordofan State, as well as zone 8 in Souki in the east of Sinnar State,” the minister said upon the return of a Sudanese delegation led by President al-Bashir from a visit to Peking.

Gas production ushers in a new stage in the development of oil industry in the Sudan. Explorations confirmed presence of gas in many areas, particularly zones 8 and 15 in the Sinnar and Red Seas States, respectively.

Last March al-Bashir announced that gas production in zone 8 in Souki, Sinnar State, would start soon.

In 2009, Sudan announced that oil production from “Tawakul” well in Sinnar had started, with an output of 3.7 million cubic feet of condensed gas per day. It estimated the overall reserve of the zone at 25 billion cubic feet.

The official Sudan news agency (SUNA) quoted the oil minister as saying that China had agreed to apply the associated gas technology (APG) in enhancing gasoline production, power generation, producing cooking gas, and modernizing the oil sector.

The minister affirmed that the state-owned oil company, Sudapet, had finalized the economic feasibility studies for the said zones. He expects the new agreements to boost oil and gas production.

Noting that extracted oil constitutes only 12% of the discovered quantities, the minister said the Sudanese presidency had set up a special committee to drive investment in solar energy, wind energy and other sources of new and renewable energy.

Thanks to the joint training program with China, he said, the oil sector is now 95% run by local talent. He praised the role played by China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) in all stages, from exploration to production and from crude oil transportation and exportation to building the necessary support facilities, such as the processing centers in Heglig and Jabalain, pipelines, export terminals, the Khartoum Refinery, and the social services.

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