WHITE NILE PETROLEUM Operating Co., or WNPOC, has discovered significant amounts of dry, non-associated natural gas in onshore block eight, according to the company’s Vice President Ali Faroug Abbas.“We discovered gas in two wells — Hosan and Tawakul — in block eight, Our plan now is to explore for more gas and oil in this block, and to commercialize it,” Abbas said.
WNPOC, in which Sudan National Petroleum Corp., or Sudapet, and Malaysia’s Petroliam Nasional Berhad, or Petronas, each own 50 per cent, made a 108bcf discovery in the block in March. In November, the company found 15bcf of gas reserves at Hosan, Abbas said.
“We are hopeful we will find more gas in block eight. The potential (after initial tests) is for 16 - 20 tcf” he added.
The latest announcement comes as Sudan prepares to celebrate its 10th anniversary of becoming an oil exporting country. Sudan is presently pumping about 520,000 bpd of crude.
So far, the only other gas discovery in Sudan was made in 2005 by Petroenergy E&P, which is a joint venture between Sudapet and China National Petroleum Corp., or CNPC, in block six. The gas will be used to fire a 400 MW power plant in the area.
The gas discovered in block eight will also be utilised domestically, with Sudapet and Petronas presently screening potential power generation and fertiliser projects. Revenues generated will go towards further gas exploration, Abbas said.
“If this potential is realised we will start exporting gas to the east, to countries like Korea, China, Japan and Malaysia but it is unlikely to go to the West until sanctions are lifted,” Abbas said.