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Africa Is The Undeniable Final Frontier For Oil

Africa Is The Undeniable Final Frontier For Oil

The pandemic has been devastating for the oil industry globally. Explorers suspended drilling, producers, idled wells, Big Oil majors put up assets for sale. But the world continues to need oil, albeit lower amounts of it than a year ago, and it will continue to need it. Exploration is not dead. It is especially not dead in Africa—a hot spot in oil and gas before the pandemic.

The East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline

Earlier this month, French Total and the Uganda government signed an important deal, for the construction of a pipeline that will carry Ugandan oil to the Kenyan coast. Two weeks later, the presidents of the two countries signed their own deal about the $3.5-billion infrastructure.

The final investment decision on the pipeline is expected by the end of the year in a rare good sign about the future of oil demand. Uganda and Kenya are both newcomers on the oil scene with hopes to join the oil exporting community soon. If the construction of a $3.5-billion oil pipeline still makes economic sense for countries that are not among the wealthiest in the world, there may be some hope for oil demand.

The South African oil discovery

Africa Energy, a Canadian exploration company, said last week it expected to strike a lot of oil in an offshore block in South Africa with reserves that could exceed those of an earlier discovery made by Africa Energy and Total in the same block. Earlier this year, Africa Energy doubled its stake in the consortium exploring the block to 10 percent. Total is the operator. Africa Energy should announce the results of the drilling project by the end of next month.

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