Ethiopian Ministry of Mines, Petroleum and Natural Gas said talks are underway with Chinese firm POLY-GCL Petroleum Group to begin the construction of Ethio-Djibouti natural gas pipeline.
Ethiopia has begun drilling process to develop the 4.7 trillion cubic feet of natural gas deposit available at Hilala, Calub and Genale areas in the Ethiopian Somali Regional State. The drilling process has yielded good results.
Tolosa Shagi, Minister of Mines, Petroleum and Natural Gas, said “We are negotiating with POLY-GCL to begin the construction of the 900km of pipeline which will allows the country to supply it natural gas to the global market via Djibouti.”
The Chinese firm will be awarded the contract after the necessary works are finalized in three months time, he said.
According to Tolosa, POLY-GCL is one of the companies licensed to engage in the exploration of natural gas in Ethiopia. It has commenced drilling wells by earmarking 40-50 million US dollars and importing two modern drilling materials.
The firm has so far drilled three wells and obtained good results. It has also finalized building the necessary infrastructures at the areas, said the minister.
According to the minister, Ethiopia plans to export natural gas in 2019 and earn 1 billion US dollars annually from it. [FBC]