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Tunisia: oil production improves in 2012

Because of its small size and its geological features, Tunisia is known as a country with relatively low production of oil. However its main peculiarity is that it is both an importer and exporter of petroleum products. The national petroleum product could thus benefit from an increase in production to meet the country’s needs and give an interesting financial impetus to the Tunisian economy, of course, if these potentials prove feasible.

According to figures released by the Ministry of Industry for early 2012, production of crude oil posted a significant increase, reaching 73,000 barrels per day in February, against 65,000 barrels during the month of January of the same year.

This increase will not fail to strengthen the production of hydrocarbons (oil, gas, LPG) which will reach 6.74 million tons of oil equivalent (toe) during the year 2012.

 

2009

2010

2011

2011

 

2012

 

Output

Output

Estimates

Output

%

Estimates

 Oil

 4,00

 3,76

 3.66

 3.29

 10%

 3,55

 Gas

 2.66

 3,20

 3,76

 3,01

 20%

 3,02

 LPG

 0,01

 0,08

 0,15

 0,12

 20%

 0,17

 Total

 6,67

 7,04

 7,54

6,42

 15%

 6,74

 Explored fields

 14

 19

 20

 12

 40%

 22

According to the same source, in 2011, domestic production of hydrocarbons (6.42 Mtoe) fell 9% compared to 2010. Indeed, domestic demand for petroleum products and natural gas declined by 6% and 2%, during the same period.

Exploration of oil and gas fields

Tunisia wants to strengthen exploration operations in oilfields all over the country in order to create new reserves. The number of prospecting and drilling permits would be 53, while that of wells would reach 19 against 50 and 12 respectively, during the year 2011.

There are also plans to consolidate infrastructure and energy, particularly in the areas of generation, transport and distribution of electricity and gas, as well as the refining and storage of hydrocarbons.

Public and private projects in the energy sector, which experienced a delay in realization during the last year, are expected to resume. Among projects whose works are scheduled this year, the development of natural gas in the south of Tunisia which would maintain the pace of explorations in deep sites, resulting in granting of nine licenses to firms that have invested in exploration before proceeding to development.

The Bizerte refinery would, in turn, be subject to continuous maintenance by providing better security and development of storage capacity in order to ensure an efficient performance.

A refinery project in Skhira would also be implemented by private operators, in partnership with foreign investors.

It should be recalled that the desposits of El Borma and Achtart ensure au lieu de ensures 50% of the national production.

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