Algeria’s proven oil reserves amount to 1,340 million tons, or 10 billion barrels, according to data from Energy Minister Mohamed Arkab, made public on Sunday in Algiers.
« Algeria’s proven oil reserves are 1.340 million tons or 10 billion barrels and at this current rate, we still have 27 years of production, » Arkab said during his appearance on the guest program of the editorial staff of Channel III of the national radio station.
In addition to its crude oil reserves, Mr. Arkab cited « natural gas reserves of 2,368 billion cubic meters, plus 260 million tons of condensate, equivalent to 4.1 billion tons of oil (Toe) ».
These reserves enable Algeria to develop its petrochemical industry, create wealth and contribute to economic recovery.
In this context, he estimated that the current annual production capacity was « comfortable », but Algeria is obliged to increase its production capacity in order to succeed in the challenge of developing the petrochemical industry and the various programs outlined in the sector’s strategy.
In this regard, he stressed that the National Company of Hydrocarbons Sonatrach has begun to explore the various deposits alone, it has signed memoranda of understanding with major global oil companies to, successfully, explore other deposits.
Mr. Arkab cited the memoranda of understanding recently signed, including one with the American company Exon Mobil in the framework of the new law on hydrocarbons for exploration in Algeria and others with which it has signed confidentiality agreements to lead to memoranda of understanding.
« The aim of this partnership with the big world companies is to preserve our shares of foreign markets and increase our production capacities and revive our petrochemical industry, » said the same official, who returned on the importance of the new law on hydrocarbons that has come into force and appreciated by the various partners of Algeria, given its adaptation in terms of oil taxation with what is done in the world in the field of hydrocarbons and the partners have the choice between four types of contracts.
In response to a question on the change at the head of Sonatrach, seen by some as a sign of « instability », the Minister of Energy argued once again that it was not about the change since the CEOs of the Company are from the same team that drew up its strategy and participate in the development of the law on hydrocarbons.
Regarding « certain criticisms about Algeria’s ability to deal with the repercussions of the global oil crisis on its economy », Mr Arkab maintained that these people did not have the data in the possession of the Ministry of Energy and the Sonatrach group, stressing once again that the cost of producing Algerian crude makes it possible to deal with this crisis in addition to other measures taken at the Council of Ministers meeting held on 8 March this year.
In this context, he reaffirmed that « the overall average cost of the Algerian barrel is 14 dollars and that most of the production is done in the fields of Hassi Messaoud where it comes down to 5 dollars », adding that Hassi Messaoud can give more production in addition to the control of costs by Sonatrach.
For Mr. Arakab, Algeria has the capacity to cope with the global oil crisis and its impact on its economy.