24 September 2015, Lagos – The number of offshore oil projects expected to come online within the next five years in Nigeria is less than a third of the same projects in Angola, according to the Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the United States’ Department of Energy.The EIA, in a new report, said most of the more recent growth in active offshore rigs outside the US had occurred in Africa.
It said, “Angola and Nigeria account for much of the growth in the region after 2010. Angola has more than 10 offshore oil projects expected to come online within the next five years.
“Nigeria’s offshore activities have been focusing on the deepwater and ultra-deepwater; at least three deepwater projects are in development and are projected to come online within the next five years.”
According to the EIA, in response to the decline in crude oil prices since mid-2014, the number of active offshore rigs has declined worldwide, dropping close to 20 per cent – 304 offshore rigs were operating in August 2015, down from 377 in August 2014.
It said during this period, the number of active offshore rigs in the US Gulf of Mexico dropped more rapidly, falling by 46 per cent.
“Over the past 15 years, the US GOM’s share of active offshore rigs worldwide has declined significantly – from almost half of all active offshore rigs worldwide in 2000 to less than 20 per cent since 2008.”
From 2000 to 2006, the share of active rigs operating offshore in Asia Pacific, the Middle East, and Latin America grew significantly, according to the EIA.
It said that share remained steady over the past decade, adding that the expansion of offshore drilling in India and China largely accounted for the growth in offshore rigs in the Asia Pacific region.
“During the early 2000s, Qatar and Iran accounted for much of the growth in active offshore rigs in the Middle East, with Saudi Arabia accounting for a large portion of the regional growth since 2006.
“Mexico accounted for the growth in active offshore rigs in Latin America in the early 2000s, as national oil company Pemex increased its offshore activity to arrest declining production from aging fields. Since 2006, Brazil has been responsible for much of Latin America’s growth.”