Egypt’s Med Gas Output Collapse: Can Even Zohr Make Up The Losses?

Egypt’s aging gas acreage is in steep decline. Output has averaged below 4bn cfd since January, a 12-year low. This is despite new fields coming onstream. Even Eni’s supergiant Zohr field – due online at end-2017 – is unlikely to return Egypt to the realm of gas exporters.

It is no secret that Egyptian gas fields, especially those in the country’s offshore Mediterranean production heartland, suffer from steep decline rates. But latest MEES analysis indicates just how precipitous these decline rates are.

The country’s overall output averaged just 3.96bn cfd for January-April 2016 (and just 3.87bn cfd for April), down by 12% or 540mn cfd on the same period a year earlier despite several new fields, such as Eni-operated Nooros, coming online in the meantime. Leaving out new start-ups, Egypt’s Oil Ministry estimates decline at currently-producing fields at a vertiginous 110mn cfd per month.

The country’s energy officials have repeatedly flagged the key projects that they hope will reverse the decline. Chief among these is the $13-14bn Eni-operated Zohr development, with output set to ramp up from end-2017 start-up to hit 2.7bn cfd plateau output in 2020, and BP’s $12bn West Nile Delta ramping up from 450mn cfd in mid-2017 to 1.2bn cfd by 2019. (CONTINUED - 1627 WORDS)


table Eni/BP Gross Offshore Mediterranean Production (Mn Cfd)