CAIRO: The Ministry of Petroleum announced plans to transform the Western Desert into a major crude oil export hub, increasing production of Al-Hamra terminal to 225,000 barrels per day during the coming period.
Minister of Petroleum Sameh Fahmy visited the new oil fields and production facilities in the Western Desert as well as Al-Hamra’s specialized oil terminal on Sunday to inspect the progress being made in the area.
During his visit, Fahmy pointed out that Al-Hamra – considered one of the most significant and strategic oil sites for crude oil shipment and export – has the potential to become a major export hub. “It [Al-Hamra] is considered a major gathering point for crude oil from the Western Desert area, where about 185,000 barrels are extracted daily, the minister’s office told Daily News Egypt.
The ministry will prepare a study for the development of Al-Hamra’s oil terminal facilities and the related pipelines in order to increase its current export capacity from 600,000 barrels to one million barrels monthly. It will also increase its storage capacity from 800,000 barrels to one million barrels.
Shamel Hamdy, head of the Western Desert Development Committee, said he is currently reviewing a report about the production development of the entire Western Desert region in light of the current production status. Several newly discovered fields have been operating successfully.
“The Western Desert area has become a promising area for oil and gas exploration. It has occupied a remarkable position among Egypt s oil production areas especially after the achievements made by international companies in discovering new oil and gas fields, the minister’s office said.
If this plan is executed, the Western Desert region’s production will rise by 40,000 barrels per day, increasing the region’s total production to 270,000 barrels per day by next April.
The comprehensive work program to intensify exploration and research operations in the Western Desert is already underway, aiming to maximize reserves and production to put the new discoveries on the map at an early stage. Three main centers will be established to gather, receive and transport crude oil and natural gas in the Gulf of Suez, the Western Desert and the Mediterranean Sea.