Ethiopia eyes gas production and exports from potential reserves

ethopia-gasThe vast natural gas reserve recently found in Ethiopia will make the country a top producer of natural gas in the world, followed by Russia and Qatar. (Image source: Daniel Fogg/Flickr)Ethiopia has announced that it will begin producing and exporting natural gas from underdeveloped reserves in its southeastern region by 2017

Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said that 27 firms have already acquired licenses to explore more than 40 blocks throughout Ethiopia in the past four years, the vast majority of them in the southeastern Somali Region.

“Studies show the existence of natural gas reserves in several places and they will all be gradually developed,” added Desalegn.

The Calub and Hilala gas fields in the Ogaden Basin has deposits of 1.33 trillion cu/m of gas and 13.6mn barrels of associated liquids, both discovered in the 1970s but not yet exploited, revealed the Prime Minister.

In 2013, China’s GCL-Poly Petroleum Investments had signed a production sharing deal with Ethiopia’s Mines Ministry to develop both gas fields.

“A Chinese firm is carrying out activities on the Calub and Hilala gas reserves. In the next two years, we plan to start exporting and using the natural gas from these areas,” noted Desalegn.

GCL-Poly Petroleum Investments will also fund the pipeline that will transport gas from Ethiopia to Djibouti for a total cost of more than US$4bn.

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