APS - 09 January 2022
ALGIERS- The national hydrocarbon company Sonatrach plans to start its first offshore oil drilling in 2023, Sonatrach's Deputy-Chairman in charge of Strategy, Planning and Economy Rachid Zerdani said on Sunday.
Speaking to Channel III of the Algerian Radio, Zerdani underlined that this first drilling will enable bringing out the potential identified in the perimeters on which Sonatrach operates with its partners.
According to the official one of the two perimeters is located in the East and the other in the country's western basin.
While broaching the achievements of 2021, Zerdani affirmed that Sonatrach has increased its production from 9 million tonnes of oil equivalent to 185 million tonnes of oil equivalent against 176 million tonnes of oil equivalent in 2020.
The exports increased by 13 million tonnes of oil equivalent in 2021 compared to 2020, achieving exports levels nearing 95 million tonnes of oil equivalent for an export turnover exceeding USD34 billion, he said.
To maintain these production levels, Sonatrach intensified its efforts aimed to "mobilize new reserves and also to speed up their mobilization," said Zerdani.
The national company has made "investments worth USD8 billion/year, on average, during the last 3 or 4 years, including more than 70% in the exploration/production."
These investments reached USD17 to USD18 billion in the past ten years in exploration.
He emphasized the strategic importance of Sonatrach's investments in the downstream oil activities, pointing out that if the company continues exporting crude hydrocarbons, it will systematically depend on the market prices."