Oil, Energy & Mining
Monday, 08 March 2010 20:36

Oil, Energy and Mining


Khartoum Refinery


Sudan is one of the rich countries in natural resources, oil, minerals, and hydro-electric generation resources. But attention to utilization of natural resources came late when the first Energy and Mining Ministry was established in the country in 1976, which included the Department of Geology, Rural Water Supply Corporation, the Petroleum General Corporation, the Pipelines General Corporation, Petroleum Products, The Geological Researches General Corporation, The Electricity and Water General Corporation which was later divided into two by the establishment of the Ministry of Electricity.

Exploration of Oil Resources:

The exploration of the oil resources is one of the most significant achievements in the Sudan in the last decade, when the country's imports of petroleum products amounted to $400 million per anmum, consuming a great portion of the hard currency revenues. Early attempts of exploration of oil began since 1959, then the American Chevron Company came in mid seventies to confirm the existence of large oil reserves in the country, but the Company suspended its work and finally withdrew from the country in 1990.

However Sudan was determined to utilize its oil and was endeavoring to diversify sources of dealings and adopted an open door policy with different states in the world. The outcome of this policy was the establishment of a national consortium to implement the policy of utilization of oil; by the end of 1996 the following bodies were established:
1) The Chinese National Petroleum Company (CNPC), 40%
2) The Malaysian National Petroleum Company, 30%.
3) The Canadian State Co. (replaced by an Indian Co.), 25%
4) The Sudanese Sudapet Co., 5%

and that was the greatest breakthrough in Sudan oil production.


Drilling exploration began in the two areas of Heglieg and Al-Wihda in 1996 while the commercial production of the ore started in 1999 with 20.7 million barrels increased to more than 150 million barrels in 2004.

Construction of the pipeline:

Within the plan to develop the oil resources in the country, the construction of a 1610 km long pipeline from the production areas to the port of exportation at the Red Sea and with it began exportation and international marketing of oil. Another pipeline was constructed from Fula oil field up to Khartoum Refinery.

Oil Refineries:

There are five oil refineries in the country; Port Sudan, Concorp, El-Obied, Abu-Gabra, and Khartoum Oil Refinery. Abu-Gabra refinery was constructed in 1992 with a capacity of 2000 bpd, El-Obied in 1996 with 10,000 barrels/day capacity, and the Concorp Refinery in Al-Shajara, Khartoum in 1999. The Khartoum Refinery at El-Giely was established and operated in 2000 with a capacity of 50,000 bpd, the first phase of expansion completed in 2004 when its capacity raised to 62,000 bpd while the capacity shall rise to 100,000 bpd by the completion of the second stage of expansion. This refinery has had the decisive role in the realization of a self-sufficiency in petroleum products. Sudan production has increased to 200,000 bpd by the end of 2005 and the government share would rise to 80%.

The establishment of Khartoum oil refinery has paved the way for Sudan to enter the world of petro-chemical industry, when Khartoum Petro-chemical Factory was established at El-Giely for the production of plastics in a partnership between the Ministry of Energy and Mining and the Chinese National Petroleum Company (CNPC).

The Sector of Electricity:

Power industry has been there since 1908 by installing a generator of a capacity of 100 KW and continuous current. In 1925 the Government of Sudan made a contract with a group of British companies for developing services of electricity and water. Hence the Sudanese Light and Energy Company. The generation capacity increased to 3000 KW. In 1956 the Government made contracts for installing steam generators of a 30 MW capacity. In 1962 there operated the first water plant for generating electricity in Sinnar Dam with a 15 MW capacity. Added to water plants that of Khashm Algriba with a 12.6 MW design capacity, and Al Ruseiris Generation Plant with a 280 MW design capacity. In 1982 electricity services were separated from that of water, and thereupon the Act of National Electricity Corporation was issued to supervise national network. Supervision over the stations outside the network was delegated to regional Governments providing that the National Corporation was to lay national plans and programs for developing the country through providing technical consultations.

The design capacity of generation in the national network amounted to 1234.6 MW up to the end  of 2008, 342.8 MW which were from water generation, 180 MW from steam generation, 45.2 MW from diesel generation, 65 MW from gas generation, and 450 MW from mixed generation in addition to thermal plants outside the national electricity network in most of Sudanese cities with a 151.6 MW capacity.


The Mining Sector:

The Sudan enjoys rich mineral ores such as Gold, Silver, Iron, Copper, Cobalt, Lead, Silicon, Mika, Chrome, Zinc, Gypsum and other several minerals yet to be utilized.

The government has paid great concern to the geological and mining sector where extensive studies were carried out in different parts of the country with the objective of assessment and attraction of many local and international companies for investment in this field. The General Corporation for Geological Research has drawn a comprehensive strategy for mineral exploration in the country where ores of Gold were discovered in the Red Sea area, central and southern Sudan, Iron, Copper, Zinc and Chrome in the Red Sea Hills, Darfur and Southern Kordofan.

Gold Mining:

A deal was concluded between Sudan and France to establish the Ariab Gold MINING Company in the Red sea region. The Company began its work in 1992 with the production of some 982 kilograms of gold. The production has reached 5565 kilograms in 1999 and increased to 8.6 thousands kilograms in 2003. The investment of Ariab has amounted to more than $36 million and the contribution of the mining and energy sector in the general revenues of the State has reached to nearly 30 billion dinars per year.

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