Ivory Coast: major discovery of oil and natural gas, what should be done?

November 04, 2021 | by: David Kodjani

The Italian energy group Eni declared, on Wednesday, September 1, 2021, to have made a major oil discovery off the coast of Côte d'Ivoire. According to the company, which already owns four other blocks in deep water (3000 m) in the country, this deposit could contain up to 2 billion barrels. This is in addition to 57 million cubic meters of natural gas.

The announcement of this discovery of oil and gas fields is the dream of most young Ivorians. The latter hope that the exploitation will help to improve their living conditions even if it is still early to know the extent of the repercussions of this exploitation for the country.

During a presidential hearing, Claudio Descalzi, the CEO of the Italian group ENI raised the possibility of a transfer of skills to Ivorian companies.

"We talked about developing efficiently and quickly to be able to bring material returns to the country. In return, we will not only invest in terms of oil, gas, energy, but in terms of workstation, and develop local content for small and medium-sized enterprises, so look at mining as an opportunity to develop the country, not only in energy but in skills, "said the CEO of the Italian group ENI.

With this discovery, on the economic level, Côte d'Ivoire can increase its proven oil reserves and its energy heritage.

The expected financial and economic benefit will help support major development projects according to Serge-Parfait Dioman, an expert in the oil and energy industry. For him, the exploitation of these deposits will offer new jobs to young people and opportunities to operators of the Ivorian oil and energy sector.

"New jobs inherent to the specificity and rigor of the oil industry will emerge. Another advantage concerns the benefits geostrategically because these will make it possible to consolidate the sub-regional leadership of Côte d'Ivoire and confirm the assurance of energy peace for its partners to whom it already sells quality petroleum products. Thanks to its two refineries, SIR (Ivorian Refining Company) and SMB (Multinational Bitumen Company) ", the expert said. .

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Writing AfroAware suggests that the Ivorian government think long term (10-20 years) by investing in its education system. This requires the training of labor local for the exploitation of oil and gas. With this investment, the country will be able to count on its own resources (engineers, experts, etc.) instead of depending on external aid.

We therefore hope that the ENI will transfer skills it has referred to its CEO for the countries of West Africa to fully benefit from all that will offer these natural resources.

Note that to date, the Ivorian government has not said how it intends to distribute the resources that will generate the exploitation of these deposits.

It is also important to underline that a period of 4 years is the average schedule for the erection and the start of operation of a platform in deep sea. But this delay can be reduced with current technologies.

Source: DW, VOA

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