Home | News    Wednesday 26 August 2009

Sudan oil body endorses Ascom & discusses Total concession


August 25, 2009 (KHARTOUM) — The National Petroleum Commission (NPC) in a meeting co-chaired by President Omer Hassan Al-Bashir and his first deputy Salva Kiir Mayadrit today approved the participation of Moldavian Ascom in block 5B.

The Commission also discussed the current situation of block B, after the freeze on oil exploration in Jonglei state of the controversial British oil explorer headed by ex-England cricketer Phil Edmonds, White Nile (WNK.LN).

Sudan’s oil minister, Al-Zubair Ahmed Al-Hassan, said today following the meeting that the NPC agreed to replace the Sudanese White Nile Petroleum Operating Company (WNPOC) by the Moldavian oil company Ascom in block 5B located in the Southern Muglad Basin.

The Moldavian Ascom obtained in the past a portion of block 5B, covering more than 20,000 square km, where it begun drilling in January 2008. The other part of the block had been operated by the consortium WNPOC led by Petronas.

The Indian ONGC and Sweden Lundin Petroleum decided to quit the consortium. The Indian firm decision was taken after southern Sudan government allowed the Moldovan firm to prospect in the acreage in contravention with a resolution by the National Petroleum Commission.

While the Lundin announced in February 2009 the selling of its investments in the region following its negative drilling results in southern Sudan.

The partners in Block 5B were Petronas Carigali White Nile (5B) Ltd; (39%), Lundin Petroleum (24.5%), ONGC Videsh Ltd (23.5%) and Sudapet Ltd (13%). Furthermore, the partnership had accepted the recommendation of the National Petroleum Commission to assign a 10 percent share to the National Oil Company of Southern Sudan to be allocated on a "pro rata" basis from each of the partner’s share.

The minister also said the Commission has mapped out a new oil concession called block EA. The long slim block runs through four southern states along the western flank of four other already commissioned blocks in southern Sudan.

The NPC, according to the minister, set up a joint committee of the Federal Government and the Government of the South to negotiate with two Spanish firms that stated their desire to drill in the block and to consider financial and technical abilities, as well as attracting other new offers.

With regard to the long time disputed block B between the British WNK.LN and the French Total, Al-Hassan said the meeting adopted the outcome of a commission on the evaluation of WNK assets. He further said that it was decided that Total would compensate its British past rival.

The British White Oil Company had started operating in the disputed 67,000 square km concession of block B on April 19, 2007; but the President of the semi-autonomous region Salva Kiir ordered to freeze its activities in May of the same year and the NPC decided to exclude the British firm.

At the time Sudan oil commission also decided on an adequate and fair compensation for the White Nile in return for any achievement in the fields, but it didn’t give any indication on who will pay the indemnities.

According to a new agreement between the Sudanese parties, Total has operating rights for the block with a 32.5 percent stake, as it was the case in the initial deal, Kuwaiti Kufpec Sudan Ltd 27.5 percent instead of 25% and state-owned Sudapet maintains its 10 percent, the southern Sudan government owned Nilepet 10%. The remaining 20% should be offered in a public bid.

Today’s meeting acknowledged the need for a third partner company to replace the US Marathon, said the minister.

Marathon Oil Corp.’s (MRO), which had been unable to keep its 32.5% interest in the block because Sudan is under U.S. sanctions, sold the stake to Total in March 2008.

Mubadala Development Company, a wholly owned investment vehicle of the Government of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi,.was seen as strongest candidate to enter Block B, but the first Vice-President didn’t yet give his approval.


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  • 26 August 2009 08:23, by Moses Kur Akech

    Something ironical here NCP and SPLM dont come to an agreement so easily that way when it comes to fundamental issues like census results, Referandum laws and many other sensitive issues such as for SPLM to get one of the significant positions defence or finance.

    In relation to South, these issues (Referandum laws and census results) deserve to be prioritised above all as time is winding up.

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  • 26 August 2009 08:25, by Otong

    We are waiting for 2011 so that we can have 100% of oil to South Sudan.

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    • 26 August 2009 13:14, by mohamad adam

      otong praise god for his mursy of puting some oil in the south of former republic of the sudan otherwise people of south sudan would have suffered because there is no any other source of living to make an income for the people of the south
      go and look for an alternaive in order to sustain development because you are left with 12 years for the oil to dry out and by then of course the so called arabs will not be there and we shal not get any body to lay the blame on [as usual]

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  • 26 August 2009 08:29, by Biliu

    So magic turns against the magician after all, USA if welling to invest in South Sudan has to consider unwinding the unilateral sanctions unjustly imposed on our people and South is now suffering as a result, southerners never sponsored terrorist, why including us USA!?

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  • 26 August 2009 09:31, by Kur

    The people of Jonglei must resist the drilling of oil. It will destroy the environment. We need agricultural tools to cultivate the land instead of the shortshighted oil exporations which leave the land devastated.

    Digging the oil that leaves the rest of the nation poor and enrich two people such Bashir and Awad Al-Jaz is just a waste of land. So getting easy money must stop and let’s work the land to sustain us and the future generations.


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    • 26 August 2009 10:02, by Lotoroboy

      Hi Mr. Kur
      when did you people of Jongelese started to cultivate, you are all cattle keepers,and your cattles graze without boundary.so pastrolist cannot go with agriculturalist this will automatically cause conflict.regarding your word that drilling will destroy your environment , there is what we called IN Environmental science that E.I.A, which stands for Environmental Impact Assessment , this should be carried out before the drilling of the oil,so it will have less impact on the environment .


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      • 26 August 2009 13:00, by Aduol Liet

        Southerners Sudanese.

        Omar Hassan al Bashir want to sell most oil before our referendum period can you beief it?

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      • 26 August 2009 20:12, by Kur


        I am afraid you have a very superficial knowledge about two things: the environment and what the people of Jonglei do for a living. My dear, we keep cattle as well as cultivating the land.You can go to Jonglei to see it for yourself.It is a simple fact. If you’re one of those people who are sitting in the offices in Juba waiting for the land to yield some oil so that you can get easy money, think twice. Oil is a nonrenewable commodity. It got to be the last resort. The other thing I want to tell you is that I do not need yuor lectures on the environment because I know what environmental impacts oil drilling brings to communities situated in such places. Go to Western Upper NIle (which they covetly called Unity State)to see what assessment was done before they started digging for oil. Hence, pretending to know environmental science you have not even read a single theory about is ridiculous.

        Therefore, everybody in South Sudan must know, including the policy makers, that agriculture is the answer to our economic problems. You can’t dig oil within the living space of the communities and assumed that everything will be fine. I am one of the ambitious farmers in Jonglei who want safe environment for agricultural practices.

        "Food Security Helps Stability."


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      • 26 August 2009 21:25, by Jeremiah Mach

        Is Dr John not from Jongulei? since when did we becomes so stupid that we don’t know how to farm, Garang was a farmer idiot, Lotoroboy.

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        • 26 August 2009 22:57, by Monyde Bai

          Regardless of all these thirst and greeds for oil money, no one should be allowed to drill in Jonglei untill all other issues have been handled well. Issues such as the anti Dinka campaign that is going on in Equatoria states and towns, land questions such as who owns lands within towns and cities? Whether only rural lands outside is own by tribes that reside on it? And whether towns and cities are national properties for South Sudan or tribes’? If all lands in towns, cities rural areas belongs to tribes, then tribes in Jonglei, Unity state, Upper Nile are the sole owners of their lands and must be consulted, permission sought from them before any move is made to do anything on their lands.
          There you go again, Okay?

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          • 27 August 2009 05:28, by James Nyol

            It is always sickening to see President Kiir submits to whatever is proposed by NCP even if it is for Southern Sudanese’s disadvantage or hell to Southern Sudanese. Does President Kiir reads between the line?

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  • 6 March 2013 06:45, by abualk

    nice to read it, very descriptive and informative article... thanks guys

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