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LIBYA - Sirte Oil Co.

SOC was set up in 1981 to take over Exxon's holdings including its LNG plant at Marsa El-Brega. In 1986, SOC took the assets of Grace Petroleum. Grace had a 12% stake in SOC. SOC operates the Nasser, Raguba and other fields in the Sirte Basin, connected by pipeline to the main 107-km line from Nasser to Marsa El-Brega.

Nasser is one of the largest oilfields in Libya, found in 1959 when it was called Zelten. It is located 300 km south of Benghazi in the central part of the Sirte Basin in a Lower Eocene reservoir. In 1959 its reserves were estimated at 2.5 bn barrels of 38[degrees] API oil, lying at 5,500-7,600 ft. A gas lift system has been installed at the field for EOR.

SOC has a number of other fields, some of which it has found after Grace's departure. Its major gas fields include Al Wafaa, discovered in 1991 in the Ghadames Basin, which straddles the border with Algeria and is an extension of Algeria's giant Alrar gas field.

Al-Wafaa has been developed by Agip for export to Italy (see Gas Market Trends of this week). This field's Libyan share is said to have 100m barrels of condensates and 2 TCF of gas recoverable.

SOC is in charge of two other gas fields, Attahaddy and Assumud. Named to signify Libya's defiance and steadfastness against the West, development work at Assumud was completed in late 1993. The field produces 75 MCF/d of gas. Assumud is said to have 458 BCF of gas in place, mostly in Jalu carbonates with some minor accumulations in the Oligocene Arida Clastics of the Najah group.

On Dec. 3, 2000, SOC announced a major gas discovery north-west of Assumud and about 90 km south-west of Marsa El-Brega, with reserves in place then estimated at 472 BCF of which SOC said 293 BCF would be recoverable.

Hyundai has developed Attahaddy (which contains 9-10 TCF) under a $250m contract awarded in September 1999.

Sirte Oil Co. (SOC) has become a major gas producer thanks to Attahaddy (see OMT), which came on stream in late 2002. Its output is 300 MCF/d. The field has a two-train plant with a capacity to process 350 MCF/d of gas. The gas is supplied to the country's power plants.

As this is the largest gas field in Libya, Attahaddy is also to supply Marsa El-Brega's LNG plant when the revamping of the facility has been done, with Shell now involved in this (see Gas Market Trends No. 3 of next week). The consultant for the field's $400m development was Teknika of the UK, which did the front-end engineering and designs (FEED). The field's development had been delayed for years due to the US and UN sanctions.

SOC last April re-issued two tenders for construction of the Melitah-Tripoli gas pipeline and completion of the Khoms-Tripoli gasline. Interested contractors have until Aug. 11 to bid for both contracts, which together are worth about $270m. SOC is to award the contracts by end-2005.

The $170m Khoms-Tripoli contract covers completion of construction work on the 160-km pipeline, which is to feed the Khoms power plant. The contract was originally awarded in 1999 to Zangas of Russia. The company completed the supply and installation of the 34-inch pipeline but did not finish construction of the two compressor stations between Marsa El-Braga and Misurata. SOC withdrew the project from Zangas at the end of 2002.

The $100m Melitah-Tripoli project involves construction of a 120-km pipeline to feed a planned power plant at Melitah or for export via the new marine Greenstream pipeline to Italy.

SOC originally issued the tenders in 2003, selecting MAN and J&P - Overseas for the two projects last year. However, SOC's recommendations were rejected by Tripoli, and the tenders were cancelled. SOC may award the two contracts to bidderr, depending on the quality of bids it receives.
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Publication:APS Review Oil Market Trends
Date:Jul 11, 2005
Previous Article:LIBYA - Zueitina Oil Co.
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