Thursday, January 07, 2010

London based Tullow Oil to prospect oil in Ethiopia

From Sudan Tribune, Thursday 7 January 2010:
British oil firm to prospect oil in Ethiopia
January 6, 2010 (LONDON) — The London based Tullow Oil, is expected to prospect oil in Ethiopia after a deal signed with the US SouthWest Energy which holds acreage in the Horn of Africa country.

According to the HIS International Oil Letter, a weekly news letter on oil industry, Tullow will explore oil in Ogaden basin in blocks 9a, 9, and 13. SouthWest Energy’s blocks cover a total area of approximately 29,000 sq. km in the north-east part of the Ogaden Basin.

The Ethiopian government believes that the Ogaden basin, which covers 350,000 sq km (135,100 sq miles), contains gas reserves of some 4 trillion cubic feet. Officials point to neighboring countries such as Sudan and Yemen as evidence there could be major oil deposits under Ethiopia’s deserts.

The Ethiopian government downplays threats by an active rebel group in the region and stresses there would be five basins out of the troubled region.

The rebel Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) attacked an oil field in April 2007 where the separatist group killed 74 people, including nine Chinese employees of Zhongyuan Petroleum Exploration Bureau, part of Sinopec, China’s biggest refiner and petrochemicals producer.

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