Sonatrach to invest $ 500 mm in African countries till 2010

Sep 26, 2005 02:00 AM

Algeria's state oil and gas company Sonatrach plans to invest nearly $ 500 mm over the next five years in African countries outside Algeria, Sonatrach Chairman and Chief Executive Mohamed Meziane said in a speech at the World Petroleum Congress.
Sonatrach also plans to invest $ 300 mm a year in exploration and production within Algeria, while international oil companies will spend an additional $ 300 mm a year in Algerian upstream development, Meziane told on the sidelines of the Johannesburg conference.

Describing the company's plans for increasing its oil and gas production, Meziane said: "We project to produce two mm barrels (of oil) per day in 2010 and to reach the level of our exports of gas, in natural gas and LNG ( liquefied natural gas), to 85 bn cm in 2010 and to 100 bn in 2015."
Internationally, Sonatrach aims to assist in the development of oil and gas throughout Africa. In North Africa, it aims to acquire exploration blocks and field-development projects in Libya, Tunisia andEgypt, and in Sub-Saharan Africa in Niger, Mali, Sudan and South Africa, Meziane said.
"We expect to invest during the next five years close to half a bn dollars on the exploration and production activity of Sonatrach in Africa," the Sonatrach CEO said.

Sonatrach is also working with state-run Nigeria National Petroleum Corp. (NNPC) in Nigeria to develop a Trans-Saharan gas pipeline, which is in the study phase. It would be 4,400 km long, linking southern Nigeria with the European coasts through Algeria's pipeline network that crosses the Mediterranean, Meziane said.
The pipeline would allow the recuperation of 220,000 barrels of gas equivalent a day, which is currently flared off into the atmosphere during oil production in Nigeria, he said.

Source: Dow Jones Newswires
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