Algeria’s oil and gas output is moving back to growth after years of stagnation, helped in part by increased production at it’s existing fields, state energy company Sonatrach said on Sunday.
The North African country has struggled to draw in foreign energy companies to help it to explore new fields, with its efforts undermined by low global oil prices and last year’s near-50 percent drop in energy revenue that accounts for more than 60 percent of Algeria’s budget.
Oil output will reach 69 million tonnes of oil equivalent in 2016, against 67 million tonnes last year, while gas production will rise to 132 billion cubic meters from 128 bcm in 2015, a Sonatrach report showed.
A drop in European gas demand has dented Algerian exports that have also been squeezed by a combination of slowing production at mature fields, low investment and Algeria’s own rapidly increasing need for gas to generate power.
Sonatrach, however, has invested to stabilise and increase production at its large, mature fields and expects to bring five new gas fields online in the south of the country over the next few years.