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South Sudan’s Block 5A commences oil production


June 23, 2021 (JUBA) - Production in South Sudan’s Block 5A – operated by Sudd Petroleum Operating Company (SPOC) – has resumed from the Tharjiath Central Processing Facility into the Tharjiath - WNPOC Heglic Control Centre pipeline after seven years of production shutdown due to civil war.

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A worker at the power plant of an oil processing facility in South Sudan’s Unity state on 22 April 2012 (Photo: Reuters)

According to a statement extended to Sudan Tribune, SPOC will unpack its production resumption journey at the upcoming South Sudan Oil & Power 2021 conference, organized by Energy Capital & Power, taking place in Juba from June 29-30.

The Block will produce more than 8,000 barrels per day (bpd) by the end of 2021, 16,000 bpd by mid-2022; 30,000 bpd by 2025 – and is expected to reach a peak of 45,000 bpd in 2028 once four field development projects have been completed.

Block 5A is the final operating Block to resume production after the Greater Pioneer Operating Company, which operates the Unity Field in northern South Sudan; and Dar Petroleum Operating Company, which operates Blocks 3 and 7 in the Melut Basin. SPOC’s resumption of production is highly significant, as it is the last joint operating company to resume production after the civil war.

“The resumption to us as a government means economic security, not only to the government of South Sudan, but also to the communities in the oil producing region,” Minister of Petroleum, Puot Kang Chol told reporters on Monday.

Meanwhile, SPOC, with the support from its partners, has also launched its Magnetic Tomography Method; a new pipeline inspection technology which is the first of its kind in South Sudan and has helped accelerate its 172km export pipeline integrity assessment work.

As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility program, SPOC commissioned its upgraded water treatment plant in Tharjiath that sources water directly from the Nile River located 16km away from the Tharjiath field, ensuring the security of water supply is sustained throughout the year and enabling SPOC to provide continuous clean and fresh water supply to over 20,000 community members surrounding its operations area.

The operator has also launched a Geocell System for pond reinstatement, which ensures a low bearing base, stabilizes eroded slopes, reinforces embankments and effectively protects liner.

“This production resumption would not be possible without the trust, belief and effort from the Ministry of Petroleum, the SPOC Partners - PETRONAS, ONGC and NILEPET, the resumption service providers as well as all SPOC employees. With the Water Treatment Plant upgrading and commissioning, SPOC has brought the river directly to our community," said Eruwan Gerry, head of SPOC.

Revenue from oil accounts for nearly 98 percent of South Sudan’s annual budget.

In June last year, the Central Bank of South Sudan said it would start buying crude gold from local miners to boost the country’s economy.


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