Africa

Guinea Bissau: Independent E&P, IOC Companies Unlock Potential MSGBC Offshore Area (by Miguel Artacho)

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Guinea Bissau: Independent E&P, IOC Companies Unlock Potential MSGBC Offshore Area (by Miguel Artacho)

But it is the oil and gas sector that really heralds the potential transformation of Guinea Bissau’s economy over the next few years.

DAKAR, Senegal, September 28, 2021 / APO Group / –

By Miguel Artacho, field editor

Oil and gas investors interested in Africa have made significant investments in some of the MSGBC basin countries – which include Mauritania, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, and Guinea-Conakry – such as Senegal and Mauritania, where the current Grand Tortue Ahmeyim (GTA) gas project grabbed the headlines. Although Guinea-Bissau has yet to receive the same level of attention from investors, its offshore areas offer good prospects for a variety of independent exploration and production (E&P) companies as well as companies. International Oil Companies (IOCs) which currently operate throughout the MSGBC Basin. .

Guinea-Bissau has weathered a difficult 2020-2021 period due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has seen increased economic growth this year which is expected to accelerate further during 2022. Analysts from the Economist Intelligence Unit (https: // bit .ly / 3zRkOP8) forecast real GDP growth of 2.5% in 2021 and 3.4% in 2022, in line with improved sentiment and higher exports of major crops of rent like cashews as economic conditions in the country continue to improve.

Guinea Bissau’s economy is largely based on agriculture and the production and export of cashew nuts – Guinea Bissau is the world’s fifth largest producer of cashews – and also exports significant amounts of fish and shrimp. . The mining industry is well developed with around 25% of the world’s bauxite reserves, and some rare earth elements are estimated in the country’s subsoil. But it is the oil and gas sector that really heralds the potential transformation of Guinea Bissau’s economy over the next few years.

Offshore oil fields have been discovered (https://bit.ly/2Y3EVN6) and several companies are already established in the country for exploration and production, including Chinese CNOOC, Swedish Svenska Petroleum Exploration and Australian FAR LTD – which is also present in The Gambia and Senegal. E&P activities are carried out in partnership with Petroguin EP, the national oil and gas company of Guinea Bissau.

As in several other countries that make up the MSGBC basin, Guinea Bissau has very promising offshore areas. In November 2020, independent oil and gas company PetroNor finalized the purchase of a permit from SPE Guinea Bissau AB, a subsidiary of Swedish oil and gas company Svenska Petroleum.

The Norwegian company PetroNor E&P recently noted (https://bit.ly/39Kadek) in Offshore Energy that the purchase gives it the right to assume the operation and the 78.75% stake in Sinapa (Block 2) and Esperanca (Blocks 4A and 5A). The contiguous Sinapa and Esperança permits are located in the Casamance saline sub-basin off Guinea-Bissau. PetroNor CEO Knut Sovold said: “This is a key strategic addition to PetroNor’s portfolio building in this very attractive exploration trend. In addition to the re-established A4 license in The Gambia and our acreage in Senegal, the equity capital available for potential leasing is a very attractive material opportunity. PetroNor continues to work to bring in partners to fund a drilling campaign on all assets over the next few years. The Atum and Anchova prospects in the deeper waters of the western part of the licensed area are currently the main drilling targets. They are analogous to the world-class Sangomar field in Senegal. Prospects are “ready for drilling”, benefiting from the technical work delivered to date by Svenska Petroleum Exploration and its partner FAR Ltd.

Speaking (https://bit.ly/3m2TwjT) to The Energy Voice, PetroNor noted that the region is expected to see potentially transformative exploration drilling in the near future. Oil has already been discovered in the shallower waters of Guinea Bissau. Sovold believes that going into deeper waters should lead to larger discoveries that will be commercially viable. “The move to Guinea Bissau fits well with PetroNor’s portfolio. We are a small E&P company with ambitions for growth. This comes from organic growth in Congo Brazzaville, development in Nigeria and longer term exploration in MSGBC permits. We want to have a large portfolio with multiple opportunities, rather than a simple interest in a single asset. “

In April 2021, Offshore Magazine reported that the AGC Authority, (Agency for Management and Cooperation between Senegal and Guinea Bissau) (https://bit.ly/3kKJjcl) launched a call for tenders for the block AGC Shallow 100 km off the coast of the town of Bissau, in northwest Africa. According to MGGS and GeoPartners, who support the promotion, the block contains the Domes Flore and Gea discoveries and the prospect of exploration. The first wells in shallow reservoirs covering the salt-induced domes at Flore et Gea have proven volumes of oil. The AGC Authority is looking (https://bit.ly/3m9Pq9X) for initiatives to market this oil, some of which leaked during testing, and is seeking bids for a future work program from interested parties who have studied all previous data and who can demonstrate competence to operate at sea.

But beyond the oil and gas sector, as noted in www.furtherafrica.com, it is not only hydrocarbons that hold the key to unlocking higher levels of growth and attracting new FDI. Renewable energy sources are also particularly fertile ground for companies looking to capitalize on the many opportunities that will arise during the energy transformation to come across sub-Saharan Africa. Guinea-Bissau is particularly promising for those who wish to invest in solar power plants and hydroelectric power generation projects. Recently, the Chinese company Sinohydro started construction of one of the first large-scale solar power plants, with the aim of selling electricity to the national company Electricité de Guinée-Bissau, under a long-term contract. term, which will triple electricity production capacity. Currently, the installed power generation capacity is estimated at 11 MW. Thus, Guinea Bissau has enormous potential (https://bit.ly/2XXUciJ) for hydropower growth, as much of the country does not have access to sufficient amounts of electricity. New renewable energy projects could also help the country set up an energy mix that will support Guinea Bissau’s rural electrification programs and the pursuit of the fight against energy poverty.

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