Petrodar is a consortium of China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) (41 percent share), Malaysia's Petronas (40 percent), South Sudan's national oil company Nilepet (8 percent), China's Sinopec (6 percent), and Tri-Ocean Energy of Kuwait (5 percent). It operates in blocks 3D, 3E and 7E with a total concession area of 72,420 square kilometers in the Melut Basin of South Sudan. Petrodar was incorporated on the British Virgin Islands in October 2001.
Petrodar's exploration activities started in 2001 in blocks 3 and 7, which at the time contained only the Adar Yale oilfields. In 2006, Petrodar opened a pipeline beginning at its oil blocks in the Melut Basin of Upper Nile state and stretching some 1,500 kilometers to Port Sudan, on Sudan's Red Sea coast. The pipeline has a carrying capacity of 500,000 barrels per day (bpd); the system also includes production facilities and a 300,000 bpd processing facility.
According to the Petrodar website in July 2012, the company's operations subsequently expanded to the Greater Palougue and Teng-Mishmish fields; the Agordeed and Gasab fields, which had first oil production in July 2006 and December 2007 respectively; the Moleeta and Mooz fields, both of which started production in March 2009; and the Gumry, Geradon and Zarzor fields, which started production in August 2008.
Blocks 3 and 7, according to the Peterson Institute for International Economics, accounted for about half of the oil produced in formerly united Sudan in 2006; in 2008, Petrodar's daily production capacity in Sudan was at 200,000 barrels of oil, with annual production at 10 million tons.
Expulsion of Petrodar president from South Sudan
South Sudan expelled the Chinese head of Petrodar, Liu Yingcai, in February 2012, accusing him of covering up the theft of South Sudanese oil by Sudan. Specifically, South Sudan's oil minister Stephen Dhieu Dau wrote in a letter announcing the expulsion that Liu continued to pay Sudan oil transit fees using South Sudanese oil money without the consent of the South Sudanese government. Petrodar denied this claim, according to the Sudan Tribune, insisting it had complied with all instructions from Juba.
The government also accused Petrodar of lack of cooperation in its decision to shut down oil production in January 2012, and negligence on the impacts of oil operations on the environment. The South Sudanese Ministry of Petroleum also said, according to the Sudan Tribune, that as it implemented the production stoppage it discovered that Petrodar was producing 40,000 barrels per day (bpd) more than the 230,000 bpd it was declaring. The South Sudanese government was also annoyed that Petrodar had not transferred its main office from Khartoum, Sudan's capital, to Juba, according to the same article in the Sudan Tribune.
The company named Baidzawi Chemat as its acting president days after the southern government expelled his predecessor, Liu Yingcai, in February 2012.
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