By Ebi Kesiena
The Government of Cote d’Ivoire has applauded a major oil discovery in the country, after it identified a major offshore oil and natural gas reservoir, sequel to a deepwater exploration by Italian oil company, Eni.
According to Minister of Energy, Thomas Camara, the discovery will greatly “increase Cote d’Ivoire’s proven reserves, as well as its oil and gas production in the coming years”.
Eni, which drilled a 3,445-metre-deep well about 60 kilometres off the coast, said it will carry out a further evaluation of the wider potential of the find.
Camara added that the reservoir could hold 1.5 to 2 billion barrels of oil and around 51 million cubic metres of gas.
Till date, Cote d’Ivoire has 51 identified oilfields, most of them offshore near the border with Ghana. Four are in production, 26 in exploration, and 21 are still open.
The country increased its oil production in 2019 by 12 percent, to reach 36,000 barrels a day.
It signed contracts in 2019 with Eni and French oil giant, Total to explore the possibility of increasing its oil production.
However, Total, Eni and other international oil companies announced significant discoveries of Ivorian offshore oil reserves in recent years.