Sonangol refuses to renew some of Total's licenses

Nov 05, 2004 01:00 AM

State oil company Sonangol said it has refused to renew some of French oil giant Total's offshore production licenses.
Sonangol informed Total it would not extend the licenses for four wells, Sonangol spokesman Joao Rosa Santos said. Total owns a 50 % share of each well.

The licenses, awarded to the French company's subsidiary Total Exploration and Production Angola, were coming up for renewal, Rosa Santos said.
"It's normal. The (licenses') term was up," he told, saying "Sonangol has its own strategy."
Sonangol consults with the government before issuing licenses.

The four wells are in an area known as Block 3. Total, which last year produced 160,000 bpd in Angola, also has interests in three other offshore blocks.
Angola's oil production in September broke the 1 mm bpd barrier after a new offshore field came online. The country, which is not a member of OPEC, is sub-Saharan Africa's second-largest producer after Nigeria.

The government has predicted output could rise to 1.6 mm bpd next year.
US companies ChevronTexaco and ExxonMobil, as well as European competitors BP and Total, are among the energy companies pumping or exploring for oil in the country. The oil sector accounts for about 66 % of Angola's state revenue.

Source: AFP
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