Since the discovery of large-scale oil and gas discoveries took place in the offshore waters of Senegal between 2014-2017, the country has been abuzz in terms of how this vast new hydrocarbon wealth will impact the Senegalese economy, making it more competitive and accelerating the pace of the country´s long-term economic development objectives as stipulated in the Emerging Senegal Plan (PSE). However, one of the issues that has been most hotly debated is how oil and gas revenues will be shared among the population. H.E. President MackySall has made it a top priority that Senegal´s oil and gas industry avoids the pitfalls that have plagued many other sub-Saharan oil and gas producing countries, where too often only a wealthy, and well-connected few at the top benefitted from oil and gas production.

The Minister of Petroleum and Energy of Senegal H.E. Aissatou Sophie Gladima has made the issue of equitable distribution of hydrocarbon revenue one of the very top priorities of her ministry. On Saturday October 2, she outlined ( the key mechanisms being considered so that all of Senegal´s population can benefit from the massive oil and gas resources that are in the process of being developed at fields such as SNE, Sangomar, Sangomar-Deep and Yaakar-Teranga that lies entirely in Senegalese water; and the gigantic Grande TortueAhmeyim (GTA) gas field that is situated on the border between Senegal and Mauritania.

“We have the hope that the arrival of these natural resources will allow us to fight poverty and better support our long-term plan of economic emergence,” she said during an interview with Senegalese newspaper L´Observateur.

COVID-19 Impact

Owing to the adverse impact of the global pandemic production schedules, first-oil and gas have been slightly delayed from the initial plans to be produced in 2021-2022. Expectations are now that large-scale production will take place during 2023. The Minister of Petroleum and Energy was asked about whether she thought that the execution of the planned projects would be carried out normally and on schedule for the target date of 2023. She stated (, “we have our fingers crossed. The two projects in development phase  (GTA and Sangomar) are seeing very satisfactory rates of their execution. On August 31, 2021, the Grande TortueAhmeyim project was in the range of 65% completion. The FPSO and the FLNG vessels that are being constructed in China and Singapore are 70% completed. These vessels are expected to be in Senegal by the end of 2022 and the start of 2023.”

As far as the SANGOMAR project is concerned, H.E. Aissatou Sophie Gladima noted that the drilling campaign is continuing and that as of August 2021 the rate of completion is around 35%. “ We have just completed the drilling in the SNP-20 wells which have been a big success and confirm the presence of large high-quality reservoirs containing oil. The goal is to begin production during the third trimester of 2023 after the installation of sub-sea infrastructure.”

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