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Daniel Stemler

Daniel Stemler

Daniel Stemler is a Hungarian freelance journalist, currently based in Madrid, Spain. He covers politics, business news, energy and current affairs in Spain, Central Europe,…

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New West Africa Energy Hotspot About To Go Online

Tullow Oil plc, recently announced that oil will begin flowing from one of its projects off the coast of Ghana by the end of the month.

In its news release, London-based Tullow provided an update on its Tweneboa, Enyenra and Ntomme (TEN) project in Ghana, which is expected to deliver crude oil in the next three to six weeks. The TEN is located in the Deepwater Tano Block some 45 km offshore Ghana and its first Tweneboa gas reservoir was discovered in 2009, followed by the Enyenra oil field in 2010 and Ntomme field in 2012.

The TEN development area is operated by Tullow, but other energy firms such as Kosmos Energy, Anadarko Petroleum and Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) all have working interest in the area. Tullow and its partners have been focusing primarily on the development of the Enyenra and Ntomme oil fields and now, with the project over 96 percent completed, the company says oil production will begin imminently.

(Click to enlarge)

Map: Tullow Oil

“During July, the integrated start up sequence is expected to be initiated with water injection to the Enyenra reservoir being followed by oil production. This sequence will then be repeated for the Ntomme reservoir”, the statement says.

Tullow expects an average annualized production of approximately 23,000 bopd gross (net: 11,000 bopd) from TEN in 2016, however the protracted border dispute between Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana prevents further drillings at TEN until the International Tribunal of the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) decides on the matter. The tribunal is expected to give its final decision in late 2017. Related: EV’s Won’t Kill Diesel – Electric Highways Will

The production development of the project includes the use of a floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) unit, which has a production capacity of 80,000 bopd. “The FPSO arrived in Ghana in early March 2016 and mooring operations are complete. The vessel is now being connected to the subsea infrastructure via the risers and umbilicals and the commissioning of these systems is under way”, Tullow said.

Regarding gas production, Tullow plans to re-inject associated gas into the Ntomme reservoir until gas export begins. The initial plan was to start gas exports 12 months after field start-up, with the Tweneboa gas reservoir coming online a year later. However, due to the fact that the fabrication of the gas export facilities is ahead of schedule, Tullow is currently evaluating the option to accelerate gas exports.

The recent production developments at TEN are certainly encouraging, however the border dispute with Côte d’Ivoire could obstruct further exploration and production plans. Regardless of the outcome of the dispute the TEN-project, along with the nearby Jubilee field, the new production from the TEN fields increases the size and importance of West Africa as an oil producing region.

These developments are also positive for Ghana, with higher production promising more oil revenues. But, as always, the real test for relative newcomers of the oil industry will be to try to stave off the so-called “resource curse” and avoid the disastrous mistakes made by Africa’s oil giants Nigeria and Angola in the past.

By Daniel Stemler for Oilprice.com

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