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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 60 (1976)

Issue: 10. (October)

First Page: 1767

Last Page: 1812

Title: Petroleum Developments in North Africa in 1975

Author(s): Marc-A. Nicod (2)


At the end of 1975, petroleum rights in the 6 countries under review covered 2,160,000 sq km on land (80%), 287,000 sq km on the shelf (11%), and 228,000 sq km in deep waters (9%). The total was 6.9% higher than at the end of 1974. In Algeria, the French state company Elf-ERAP dropped all its interests in production and exploration rights, but the second French group active in the country (Total) renewed its agreement with the Algerian government for an additional 5-year period. In Sudan all valid exploration licenses were transformed into production-sharing contracts; and in Tunisia the Italian state company AGIP signed the country's first production-sharing contract.

An increase of 27% was reported in seismic activity. Offshore seismic surveys amounted to 60 crew-months or 11% of the total.

Wildcat drilling activity increased with 96 wildcats drilled in 1975 compared to 74 in 1974. Of the total meters drilled, about 24% was offshore. During the year, 10 discoveries (7 oil and 3 gas) were reported in North Africa, 1 in Egypt, 6 in Libya, 1 in Morocco, and 2 in Tunisia. Three of these discoveries were offshore in the Gulf of Gabes, 1 in Libyan waters (oil blowout by Aquitaine) and 2 in Tunisian waters (gas discoveries by Aquitaine/ERAP).

Field drilling activity also increased (+15%) because of the development of new fields discovered in 1974.

Average oil production in North Africa in 1975 was 2,756,594 BOPD, a decrease of 1.5% compared to 1974. Oil output was down in Algeria, Libya, and Morocco, but there was a marked increase in Egyptian production (+57%), mainly because of the putting on stream, and production increases, of fields in the Gulf of Suez. It is worth noting that the Egyptian output reached 300,000 BOPD in December 1975 as a result of the additional 80,000 BOPD recovered from the Sinai fields that were returned by Israel in the fall of the year.

Only fragmentary information is available on the gas production, which was up about 11% from 1974, with an average of about 2 million MCFGD.

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