Tunisia: Key Gas Project Faces Further Delays As Unrest Grows

Continued unrest in southern Tunisia has halted work on the country’s only sizeable ongoing upstream development. Reversing the country’s declining oil and gas output requires investment, but investors are running scared.

Austria’s OMV, operator of the $1.1bn, 80mn cfd Nawara wet gas project, in February admitted that first gas was likely to be delayed from 1H to end-2018 (MEES, 17 February). Now even that timeframe is looking ambitious.

OMV CEO Rainer Seele tells his firm’s Q1 earnings call on 11 May “We might see some delay in the project in Tunisia. As you may have seen in the press that the environment has not changed for the better… we have stopped our work on the Nawara project. We have to wait and see how the situation in Tunisia is going to develop. If the situation is not improving, then we might see a further delay of the capex spending on Nawara.” Until early 2016 the target start-up date remained 2017 (see table). (CONTINUED - 1400 WORDS)


table Tunisia's $1.1Bn Nawara Gas Project: % Completion
chart Tunisia Oil, Gas Output: Steady But Relentless Decline...
chart ... As Exploration Collapses
table Tunisia Output By Field/Region