Tunisia’s oil production fell to 50 thousand barrels/day and the government is seeking to help oil companies based in the country to overcome difficulties, as some of them are planning to leave, said Minister of Energy and Mining Mongi Marzouk.
Speaking at an interview with TAP, he added that the Tunisian Company of Petroleum Activities (ETAP) seeks to ensure the sustainability of foreign companies operating in Tunisia, in a context marked by dropping prices on the international market and a downturn in production of some oil fields.
“Companies have stated their intention to leave the country,” he said, noting that the case of production in Tunisia now exceeds the selling price in international markets.
Regarding the Sfax-based Petrofac Company which has threatened to leave the country, Marzouk said it was decided to submit the case of sit-inners to the Prime Ministry to hold a Cabinet meeting on this issue.
Nearly 266 university graduates are blocking the site of Petrofac in Kerkennah pushing the British investor to ask for the closure of the site and lay off 1,200 employees.
Open-door Day on oil sector
The minister said oil production in Tunisia fell to 50 thousand barrels/day while natural gas production has reached 6.5 million cubic meters/day.
He stressed that the decline in oil production is related to the oil crisis on the international market, especially as wells with poor performance have become unprofitable for international companies.
Marzouk noted that the ministry is preparing the organization of an open-door day on the oil sector on March 26, 2016 to present data on the sector.
He added that this event will help stakeholders and experts as well as the civil society to learn about the oil issue, which has sparked controversy since the Revolution, besides the presentation of data on the development of oil production and consumption in Tunisia.
Publication of implementing provisions on renewable energy
The minister said the department will publish this month the implementing provisions on renewable energy adopted last year by the House of People’s Representatives (HPR).
He added that these laws will help operational domestic resources in renewable energy and regulate the relationship between producers of these energy and marketing companies, noting that the other production projects such as “TUNUR” will be submitted to conditions, stated in the specifications on the production of renewable energy.
The implementing provisions are published on the ministry’s site to collect views of stakeholders in this field.
Marzouk noted that the ministry is now working to update the Hydrocarbon Code to make it compliant with the constitution and in such a manner as to introduce principles related to good governance and dissemination of contracts.