Namibia has no more exploration blocks left: Katali

18 Sep 2014 16:20pm
WINDHOEK, 18 SEP (NAMPA) - There is no more prospective exploration blocks offshore Namibia, Mines and Energy Minister Isak Katali said on Thursday.
Government is waiting for companies which are occupying the exploration blocks to do their work properly, and find oil in the country, he stressed at the opening of a three-day International Oil and Gas Conference and Exhibition taking place in the capital.
“The oil and gas exploration and production sector is one of the sectors which the Ministry of Mines and Energy takes very seriously.
This is evidenced by the amount of effort that we have put in to promote and attract international oil companies to Namibia in such a manner that we have virtually no more prospective exploration blocks left offshore Namibia,” Katali stated.
He stressed that the companies which have explored here in the last few years acquired thousands of kilometres of 2D and 3D seismic surveys.
The companies - Chariot, Petrobras, BP, HRT, Galp Energia, Arcadia Expro, Tower Resources and Repsol - are part of a group which drilled six wells in the past three years, thereby enhancing the knowledge of the country’s geology and petroleum potential.
Katali said although the exploration companies have not succeeded in discovering commercial quantities of hydrocarbons as anticipated, the government is not disheartened because it knows that an oil discovery requires patience, careful exploration and an enabling environment for explorers to do what they do best.
“We also believe that we have created an enabling environment for international explorers to come and risk their hard-earned funds here, and we hope that those of you who are here from those companies have found your experiences so far rewarding,” he continued.
The minister expressed delight that there is an active petroleum system in Namibia generating oil, as proven by HRT last year in one of their licence areas in the Walvis Basin.
Namibia is one of the last remaining frontier exploration countries in the world with only a small gas discovery of 1.3 trillion cubic feet (TCF).
“We have a lot to learn about the industry, hence the importance of platforms like this where we can share our experiences and also learn from experiences of others around the world in order to improve our knowledge of the industry, and improve on our management and regulation of the sector,” he said.
The conference - under the theme 'Unlocking and optimising our resource potential’ - forms part of Rich Africa Consultancy’s efforts to present principal stakeholders with an opportunity to generate more attention to an emerging oil and gas area.
The event also offers an opportunity to attract and facilitate investments towards Namibia’s oil, gas and energy sectors.
It ends on Friday.