Following the reports on April 11 that Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir will step down,
Will Scargill, Senior Oil & Gas Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view on the effect on the country’s oil and gas industry:
“Efforts to attract renewed investment into Sudan’s oil and gas industry may be delayed by political upheaval. The government was hoping that remaining US sanctions would be lifted, paving the way for new licensing, but a bid round now appears unlikely in the near term.
“Sudan’s oil industry has declined significantly over the past decade, now producing a little over 60,000 barrels per day compared to around 500,000 barrels per day back in 2007. Major oil fields were lost when South Sudan gained independence in 2011 and the remaining industry has suffered from a lack of investment, in part due to the country’s political and economic isolation. To combat this the government had hoped to offer acreage for new exploration later this year, though this process had already been delayed from its original schedule.
“A change in leadership after al-Bashir’s 30 years in power is bound to be disruptive to the implementation of policies to attract new investment and at the moment the political situation still appears very uncertain. The current instability may continue if the army’s transition plans do not meet protestors’ wider demands.”