Eni Follows Up Berkine Basin Breakthrough With CEO Visit, Algeria

Barely recent weeks after the company announced major oil discoveryin the Zemlet el Arbi concession, located in the Berkine North Basin in the Algerian desert, Eni has disclosed that the  Chief  Executive Officer, Claudio Descalzi, has met in Algiers the Prime Minister Aymen Benabderrahmane and the Minister of Energy, Mohamed Arkab, to discuss the company’s current and future activities in the country, and the current energy crisis. Within this framework, the historic partnership between Sonatrach and Eni is already working to define further opportunities for supplying gas to Italy.

Claudio Descalzi was then received by the CEO of Sonatrach, ToufikHakkar. The parties discussed the issue of gas supply and reviewed the short- and medium-term initiatives underway to increase supplies through the TransMed/Enrico Mattei gas pipeline.

The meeting was an opportunity to confirm the will to accelerate the development of new oil and gas projects in the area of the Berkine South contract, which entered into force on 6 March. Eni and Sonatrach have announced significant oil and associated gas discovery in the Zemlet el Arbi concession, located in the Berkine North Basin in the Algerian desert. The concession is operated by a joint venture between Eni (49%), and Sonatrach (51%). Preliminary estimates of the size of the discovery are around 140 million barrels of oil.

Berkine North Basin

The project includes the fast-track construction of a new oil and gas development hub in the region, leveraging synergies with the existing MLE-CAFC assets (Block 405b). Eni’s and Sonatrach’s commitment is based on the shared strategy of an accelerated time to market and on the availability and capacity of the Sonatrach group contracting companies which will carry out the work. The planned activities will allow a significant increase in national production already this year, with the first production expected in July, just three months after the agreement entering into force.

Finally, the parties confirmed their joint commitment to accelerate the decarbonisation of activities by replacing gas with renewable energy sources.

At the end of the meeting, Eni’s CEO thanked Sonatrach for the constant support and the friendly and fruitful relationship: “Today’s meeting is testimony to the commitment made by Sonatrach and Eni to strengthen their partnership in Algeria, in line with a shared strategy of accelerated project development, and pursuing decarbonisation objectives as part of our commitment to achieve carbon neutrality in the long term”. Eni has been present in Algeria since 1981. With an equity production of 100,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, Eni is the main international company in the country.

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