Pan Ocean’s pipeline ‘ll boost crude export by 160,000bpd
17 Aug 2017
The agitation for resource control by the Niger Delta militants made the creeks of the region dangerous for expatriate oil workers. This led to shutdowns of operations by oil companies.
Until recently, following several interventions by the Federal Government, major pipelines, including the Nembe Creek Trunk Line (NCTL) and Trans-Forcados Crude Export Pipeline, have been under attacks. When such blow outs occur, it takes weeks, months or sometimes a year to get the pipelines back on stream.
The Federal Government, however, has been able to check some of the militants through peace talks. Despite these, there is the need for a safer way of evacuating crude oil.
Driven by the urgent need to encourage alternate field production potential of exploration and production companies, as well as infrastructure development in Nigeria, Pan Ocean Oil Corporation, operator of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation/Pan Ocean Joint Venture, began to seek alternative line to evacuate crude from the fields to export terminals.
Pan Ocean has awarded a contract for the construction of Amukpe-Escravos Pipelines Project (AEPP) to Fenog Nigeria Limited, an indigenous company in 2011.
The contract, which involves installation of 20-inch pipeline on the 67-kilometre route, will have the capacity to handle 160,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd) with capacity to accommodate third parties on crude oil evacuation to the Escravos Tank farm.
The Amukpe-Escravos Pipeline Project (AEPP), a joint venture (JV) of the NNPC and Pan Ocean, The Nation learnt, is scheduled to begin operation before the end of third quarter of the year. It will offer an option to the “much-troubled” Trans Forcados Pipeline (TFP) for crude export from mid-western oil producers in the Niger Delta.
“The primary objective of AEPP is to ensure that there is no disruption to crude oil export like the scenario we experienced on the TFP over the past 16 months where there was a total collapse of crude export. Nigeria’s experience and history has shown that it is not wise to be highly dependent on a particular source that is why we have AEPP as alternative to TFP which has been our major means of exporting crude oil as a joint venture (JV) partner,” John Okusolubo, senior pipeline engineer and Project Lead, AEPP, said.
According to him, the construction of the AEPP entails the use of Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) to install the pipelines to secure them from vandalism. The project’s objective is to provide Pan Ocean JV and other Niger Delta mid-western producers, such as Seplat, Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), Conoil, Sahara and other oil producers in the area an alternative export pipeline route to the TFP that has been a casualty of many militant attacks.
Nigeria’s crude export dwindled in the past two years because of the massive vandalism. The TFP has a daily capacity of 240,000 bpd, with average daily flows ranging from 200,000 bpd and 240,000 bpd. Amid its shutdown, Nigeria’s crude oil production fell from two million bpd to as low as 1.27 million bpd, losing its position as Africa’s number one crude oil producer and falling behind Angola several times over the past year.
The AEPP will be a major export line. It will give opportunity for other injectors who may be stalled by the erratic vandalism of the TFP to join in transporting crude to Escravos. This achievement means Pan Ocean has an alternative line to export its crude and has also created an opportunity for others who have been using TFP to also export their crude without disruption.
This project will help the country to continue to flow their crude and keep the economy alive. It is also imperative that other indigenous firms individually or collaboratively find ways to make the oil and industry uninhibited to boost the economy.