CNPC Operations in Niger
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In June 2008 CNPC was awarded a licence to produce oil from the Agadem Block in the eastern Diffa region bordering Chad. The agreement with the Nigerien government stipulated that US$ 5 billion would be invested in drilling 18 exploration wells, building a refinery with a capacity of 20,000 barrels per day (bpd) and constructing a 2,000 kilometre pipeline. Business information service IHS reported that in October 2007, CNPC was one of eight companies that submitted bids for the Agadem Block concession - what IHS described as "Niger's most attractive asset". Other bidders were Petronas, Sonatrach, Burren Energy, South Africa Energetic, ATI Petroleum, Tullow Oil and TransAfrican Energy.
The Agadem Oilfield began producing in November 2011, with production estimated to reach a capacity of 20,000 bpd in 2012. The Agadem Block will also provide the Soraz Oil Refinery with gas, with an expected annual yield of 44,200 tonnes of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)..
As part of the June 2008 agreement with the Nigerien government, CNPC constructed a pipeline to connect the Agadem Oilfield and the Soraz Oil Refinery - allowing them to exploit the hydrocarbon reserves of the Agadem Block. The oil pipeline became operational on 8 October 2011, ahead of the commissioning of the Soraz Oil Refinery on 28 November 2011.
Soraz Oil Refinery
CNPC constructed the Soraz Oil Refinery in Olelewa (Zinder Region), some 900 kilometres east of the capital Niamey. It is operated by the Zinder Refinery Company, referred to in French as the Société de Raffinage de Zinder (SORAZ). The refinery has a 20,000 bpd capacity.
- "CNPC beats out seven companies for Niger’s Agadem Block" Information Handling Services, retrieved 4 April 2012.
- "Oil, Uranium Projects Brighten Medium-term Prospects in Niger" International Monetary Fund, retrieved 25 March 2012.
- "Exploitation pétrolière au Niger, comment en optimiser les retombées?" Cri de Cigogne, retrieved 28 March 2012.
- "Chinese firm to help niger produce oil in 2012" Afrique Avenir, retrieved 2 April 2012.
- "Sur le site de la SORAZ : en attendant le premier baril" Niger Diaspora, retrieved 2 April 2012.
- "Niger Becomes Self-Sufficient with Refinery Launch" Daily Times, retrieved 2 April 2012.
- "Niger refinery faces stocking, export problems" Reuters, retrieved 28 March 2012.
- "Exploitation pétrolière au Niger, comment en optimiser les retombées?" Cri de Cigogne, retrieved 4 April 2012.