Tunisia Gas Field Won't Start until 2019: OMV
Austria’s OMV has explained why its €1bn Nawara gas field development onshore southern Tunisia has fallen two to three years behind schedule.
Upstream chief Johann Pleininger said, in OMV’s annual results February 21, that Nawara will not now be completed until 2019. When OMV decided in 2014 to develop Nawara, the project was to have been completed in 2016 , subsequently revised to late 2017.
“The project's progress has been negatively affected as a result of the recent low oil price environment and other challenges, such as land management issues and most recently social unrest in the south. These manifested themselves as increased costs and delays in first commercial production,” a spokesperson for OMV told NGW February 22. Last summer protests in southern Tunisia briefly shut in various gas projects in the region.
There is currently no production at Nawara, confirms OMV, as it is “still in the initial development phase.” Once fully operational, it is expected to produce some 2.4mn m3/d (0.876bn m3/yr) commercial gas, plus condensate and LPGs, the company said. The project, estimated to cost €1bn, is expected to increase Tunisia’s gas production by 15% and replace 30% of the gas imports from Algeria, OMV added.
NGW had described Nawara as a redevelopment, but OMV now points out that it is a new gas development.
Elsewhere in north Africa, OMV said February 21 that its overall 2017 upstream production was positively impacted by an increase in its Libya output to 25,000 b/d. Pleininger said this could be increased to 29-30,000 b/d in 2018 without additional investment, or to 40-45,000 b/d if OMV were to acquire Occidental assets in Libya. None of OMV's Libya output is gas, the company now tells NGW.