Oil and Gas

In 2009, Algeria produced a total of 2.13 million barrels per day (bbl/d) of oil liquids, of which 1.33 million bbl/d was crude oil. Algeria was the fourth largest crude oil producer in Africa after Nigeria, Angola, and Libya and the largest total oil liquids producer on the continent. As a member of OPEC, Algeria’s crude oil production can be limited by the group’s crude production quotas, but Algeria also produced 456,600 bbl/d of condensate and 344,000 bbl/d of natural gas liquids, which are exempt from OPEC quotas. Domestic oil consumption reached about 15 percent of total production, or 325,000 bbl/d, in 2009.

According to The Oil and Gas Journal, as of January 2010, Algeria had 159 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of proven natural gas reserves – the tenth-largest natural gas reserves in the world, and the second largest in Africa.

LNG exports currently make up about one-third of the country’s total natural gas exports. About 711 Bcf of LNG was exported in 2008. Most of Algeria’s LNG exports go to Europe: about 643 Bcf, or 90 percent, in 2008, according to EIA estimates. Algeria in 2008 was the world’s sixth largest exporter of LNG (behind Qatar, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, and Nigeria), exporting around 9 percent of the world’s total LNG exports, primary customers were France, Spain, Turkey, and Italy.

A third oil and gas licensing round was launched in September 2010 when the National Agency for the Valorisation of Hydrocarbon Resources (Alnaft) offered rights to develop 10 areas in a bid to strengthen the performance of the country’s energy sector. Meetings were scheduled to be held between October and December designed to clarify the details with bid submissions and subsequent public opening of bids taking place on 3 March 2011.

Under the revised 2006 Hydrocarbons Law, state energy firm Sonatrach takes a 51 per cent stake in all upstream developments and a tax is levied on every barrel of oil sold at more than $30. Sonatrach operates the largest oil field in the country, Hassi Messaoud, which is reported to have produced around 350,000 bbl/d of crude in 2009, about 26 percent of crude oil production. Hassi Berkine, a joint venture between Sonatrach and Anadarko, meanwhile, produced 250,000 bbl/d in 2009, which amounts to approximately 25 percent of total crude production.

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