Central Processing Facility in Tharjiath, Unity State. Photo by Okech Francis

South Sudan Crude Output Declines to 154,000bpd

By Okech Francis

Crude oil production in South Sudan has dropped to 154,000bpd from about 190,000 bpd at the end of 2019, as oil producing blocks reach their peak, the Undersecretary in the Ministry of Petroleum, Awow Daniel Chuang, said.

“We all know that block 3 and 7 and block 1, 2 and 4 have already reached their peak and are on the decline so the only potential is block 5A which still remains capped,” Chuang said in Juba.

“Today the production has dropped to 154,000 barrels a day in the country from three producing areas,” he said noting that block 3 and 7 in Upper Nile has dropped from an initial 120,000bpd to 103,000 bpd while in block 1, 2 and 4 it has reduced to 48,000 bpd from 53,000bpd.

Output resumed in Block 5A producing 3,000 but is expected to reach 8,000bpd by the end of the year, Chuang said.

The country, which at independence in 2011 was producing over 300,000 bpd is recovering from 6 years of crisis which significantly reduced its crude output.

To reach pre-crisis levels, it is offering new blocks for exploration to international investors.

In June, it floated 5 blocks out of 14 potential ones in its first ever licensing round.

Crude reserves in the African nation are also declining and it needs to “target recovery factors” in order to continue producing more, according to Chuang.

 “As you can see, block 3 and 7, recovery factor is only 23 percent and in block 1, 2 and 4 you can see we have only 33 percent,” he said.

“Block 3 and 7 can be increased to 35 percent and block 1, 2 and 4 to 45 percent and this will significantly increase production rate.”

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