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Oil pumping resumes in S.Sudan’s Toma South field: minister

August 26, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s Minister of Oil and Gas Azhari Abdel-Gadir said oil pumping has resumed from South Sudan’s Toma South oilfield on Friday.

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South Sudan’s Petroleum and Mining Minister Stephen Dhieu Dau (3rd R) applauds as he restarts oil production in the main oil field in Palouge, on May 5, 2013. (Reuters)

Speaking at a press conference in Khartoum on Saturday, Abdel-Gadir said Toma South would pump 20,000 barrels per day (bpd), pointing production at the oilfield had stopped in 2013 due to civil war.

He said Sudanese engineers managed to repair the oilfield and resume production one week ahead of the schedule, pointing to the positive economic impact of this move on both countries.

The Sudanese minister expected production at five oilfields in Unity State would reach 80,000 bpd following completion of maintenance work by the end of the year.

He pointed out that oil production in South Sudan could return to its normal average of 375,000 bpd in three years, saying the newborn nation currently produces 130,000 bpd.

Abdel-Gadir also expected oil production in South Sudan could increase to 210,000 bpd by the end of the year.

Last July, Khartoum and Juba agreed to repair the damaged oil wells and to resume oil production in several oil fields stopped since several years due to the nearly -five-year armed conflict in the country.

South Sudanese Oil Minister Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth on 31 July 2018 told reporters in Khartoum that oil production will resume on 2 September with 45,000 bpd from El Toor and Toma South fields. After what will restart the production of other oil fields in Munga and Unity.

South Sudan heavily relies on oil income to fund up to 98% of its budget. Also, it relies on the Sudanese pipeline to export its oil production through the Red Sea.

In return, the transit and processing fees South Sudan pays to Sudan to transport its crude oil constitute an important revenue stream for Sudan.

South Sudan became the world’s newest nation after declaring independence from Sudan in 2011.

However, in 2013 the country was plunged into civil war killing tens of thousands of people and displacing millions.

(ST)