Chinese Firm Helps Ethiopia Yield its First Barrel of Crude Oil



Addis Ababa, June 28 -- a Chinese firm helped Ethiopia produce its first-ever barrel of crude oil in the Ogaden basin, indicating that the development of the oil & gas industry has entered a new stage.

Barton Yu, Chairman of POLY-GCL Petroleum Group Holdings Limited (POLY-GCL) and the representative of the Ethiopian side cut the ribbon for the project. Witnessed by the representatives of the two sides, the pilot test oil outlet valve was slowly opened, marking the successful extraction of the first barrel of test crude oil in Ethiopia.

As an important energy project in Africa under China’s initiative of “Belt and Road”, the “Ethiopia – Djibouti oil and gas project“ was developed by POLY-GCL, involving oil & gas exploration and development in Ethiopia, Ethiopia-Djibouti long-distance transmission pipeline, LNG plant in Djibouti, and wharf construction. As a major energy construction project of Ethiopia and Djibouti, the project is expected to significantly change the energy and economic development pattern of the two countries.

Meles Alemu, Ethiopia’s Minister of Mines, Petroleum and Natural Gas, said that the project is of great significance to Ethiopia and the production of the first barrel of test crude oil marks an important milestone in the history of the oil & gas development of the country. He noted that POLY-GCL has demonstrated Chinese firms’ professional capability and spirit of striving for success, and expected that the two sides strengthen cooperation with each other and make greater contributions to the nation and the people of Ethiopia.

Abdi Mohamoud Omar, President of the Somali Region of Ethiopia, said that he is very glad to witness the historic moment, the oil & gas exploration and development of Chinese firms have brought immerse changes to the Somali State and injected vitality to local economic development, employment and community development.

It is reported that the estimated geology resources of gas and crude oil of the Ogaden basin, where GCL’s “Ethiopia – Djibouti oil and gas project” is located, may reach 5 trillion cubic meters and over 400 million tons, respectively. The project will become the largest project of Ethiopia for earning foreign exchange.