Although there have been two major gas discoveries in the deepwater MSGBC basin, the industry is yet to capitalize on the resources, according to GlobalData.

LONDON – Although there have been two major gas discoveries in the deepwater MSGBC basin off northwest Africa, the industry is yet to capitalize on the resources, according to GlobalData.

One reason could be the final investment decision (FID) taken in 2018 on the Tortue/Ahmeyim LNG development offshore Mauritania and Senegal, followed by sanction for the Sangomar oil field project off Senegal in early 2020.

Conor Ward, oil and gas analyst at GlobalData, said: “There is significant potential in both Senegal and Mauritania, and so far, cautious investment has been made to kick-start smaller scale developments in both countries.

“In comparison, while there have been far larger [ultra-deepwater] discoveries in BirAllah and Yakaar-Teranga, little progress has been made towards commercial development of these fields.”

These two discoveries hold estimated in-place resources of 10-25 tcf and 12-60 tcf, respectively, sufficient in each case to support standalone LNG developments.

“This significant resource base should be attracting far more interest than it currently seems to be,” Ward continued, suggesting the main issues could be the continued market impacts caused by COVID-19 and the high capex required to unlock both resources.

“In a time when companies are increasingly more careful with their budgets, and in an area where they have limited experience, it is likely that the participants will wait and see the success of Tortue/ Ahmeyim before making a concrete decision on Yakaar-Teranga and BirAllah.”

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