Egypt’s oil output fell to 633,000 b/d for 2019, the lowest since 1980. In sharp contrast to the country’s offshore gas boom, oil production is down by 60,000 b/d (9%) since 2015 alone. The country’s official target of boosting output to 690,000 b/d by mid-2020 (MEES, 8 November 2019) stands no chance of being hit.

But scratch the surface and there is cause for optimism. Key producer Apache of the US operates just under 200,000 b/d of gross output, all in the Western Desert. Apache accounted for 57% of 2019 Western Desert output, whilst the region accounts for 55% of Egypt’s total oil output (MEES, 21 February). (CONTINUED - 779 WORDS)