August 18, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The governor of North Darfur Mohamed Osman Kibir announced that oil exploration in the Nekhaila field block 12, north-east of its state is about to enter production and marketing stages after the completion of connecting the wells in the field to the main oil pipeline in Sudan.
The Darfur region has been witnessing a violent conflict since a decade ago between the government and rebel movements drawn mainly from African tribes over claims of marginalization. Furthermore, tribal clashes have become a regular occurrence in the restive region.
Kibir also disclosed that there are promising signs of oil presence in Abu Sufyan field which lies in the southeastern parts of the state in addition to the ongoing exploration process in Lawabid area of El-Fasher.
The governor also noted that North Darfur has large iron ore reserves in Kutum locality along with gold in other parts of the state.
Sudan lost 75% of its oil reserves after the southern part of the country became an independent nation in July 2011, denying the north billions of dollars in revenues. Oil revenue constituted more than half of the Sudan’s revenue and 90% of its exports.
Sudan currently produces 133,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd). The country’s production is stationed mainly in the Heglig area and its surroundings, as well as western Kordofan.
Following South Sudan’s secession, several foreign companies started exploration in new oil fields upon offerings by Khartoum.
Sudan has also managed to boost its gold production which has helped it cover part of the budget shortfall caused by the loss of oil.