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Oil minister discuss with chinese officials building Sudan’s first natural gas pipeline

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February 24, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese oil minister Mohamed Zayed Awad Wednesday held discussions with Chinese officials to build the first gas pipeline in Sudan and ways to develop gas industry in the east African country

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Workers from the Sudanese oil pipeline in the disputed Abyei area reconstruct the line on June 14, 2013 following an explosion the previous day. (Getty)

Speaking to Ashorooq TV channel from Beijing- China, Awad said he discussed with officials from the state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) ways to develop oil crude and natural gas extraction systems in Sudan in order to increase national production.

The minister said he also discussed the signing of a partnership deal with a big Chinese natural gas company that he didn’t name for the construction of natural gas processing facilities and deposits in Sudan.

Natural gas associated with oil extraction is usually burnt off at oil fields due to the lack of market near the production sites. The Chinese investors didn’t construct natural gas pipeline because it was not economically feasible.

The visiting minister said the discussions with Chinese officials aimed to increase production of natural gas, its transportation and distribution from a well site to an end consumer.

Sudan seeks to take advantage of the fall of oil prices to develop natural gas industry, Awad said. He further expected that the current juncture will encourage Chinese natural gas firms to participate in the Sudanese natural gas project.

China which is the largest foreign investor in Sudan, agreed last year to embark on new oil explorations and to expand its oil operations in Sudan.

In line with an agreement reached in September 2015, China will explore for oil and gas in the Red Sea, Sinnar, and West Kordofan.

During a visit to New Delhi last January, Awad offered three gas and oil blocks to India’s ONGC Vides.

The east African nation lost three quarters of its oil revenue when South Sudan seceded in 2011 and currently produces about 115,000 barrels per day (bpd).

(ST)

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