Tigrai Online, July 04, 2012
The Ethiopian Ministry of Mines has announced that nine foreign companies are currently exploring Ethiopia for oil, investing a total of US$2.4 billion in the process
Ethiopian state media reported that the companies are currently exploring Gambella, South Omo, Somali, Afar and Ethiopian Rift Valley areas.
The companies’ exploration plans are at various stages of implementation.
According to the ministry, PetroTrans has been licensed to explore the Ogaden area in Somali State for oil while discussions with a company interested in exploring the Gambella Basin are ongoing.
A number of overseas companies are focussing on the Gambella Basin, on the border with Sudan, which is believed to have oil deposits.
Previous reports indicated that Tullow Oil is planning to start drilling its first well in Ethiopia by the end of 2012, while China’s BGP Geo Services is also conducting a seismic survey of South Omo.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenwi for the first time indicated in May 2012 that oil would be discoverd in Ethiopia
Meles told the participants of the forum comprising 200 international corporate CEOs and 200 local business leaders that there are investment opportunities in the extractive industry including oil exploration while pointing his hand at Tewodros Ashenafi, Founder, Chairman and CEO of South West Energy (HK) Ltd, the first Ethiopian oil and gas exploration company, and saying “Tewodros will be the bearer of the good news.”