South Sudan’s Minister for Petroleum, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth has disclosed that the country is hoping to boost oil production by 70,000 barrels per day (bpd) by June. This is coming a month before the government and rebels are due to form a government of national unity.
According to Reuters, the current production in the landlocked East African nation is about 160,000 bpd.
The Minister said “With 3.5 billion (barrels of) proven reserves and only 30 percent explored, there is more to offer to serious investors”. He further explained that production is expected to restart in the Al-Nar, Al-Toor and Manga oilfields by April 27.
Apparently, much of the country’s oil infrastructure was damaged during a five-year civil war which left about 400,000 people killed and more than a third of the country’s 12 million people displaced by the conflict which was punctuated by multiple rounds of failed mediation followed by renewed bloodshed.
Meanwhile, the government signed a peace deal with most of the rebels in September, under which they were to gather, disarm, retrain and integrate their forces ahead of the formation of a unity government in May.