Continental Focus, International Reach

Aiteo Budgets up to $5 Billion for Nigeria E&P Ops

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Aiteo Eastern E&P Co. plans to spend as much as $5 billion to boost its oil and natural gas production in Nigeria over the next five years. Aiteo will drill new oil wells and re-open existing ones as it seeks to raise production, CEO Victor Okoronkwo said in a Bloomberg interview.

“We have a development plan which has been submitted to our joint venture partner NNPC,” he said.

The Nigerian government has made changes to how operators can raise funds, moving away from the so-called cash call model whereby partners contribute in line with their stake in a joint venture. That gives operators more freedom to secure financing. Nigeria is also cutting its holdings in joint ventures in order to raise cash.

“Our expectation is that in line with the joint venture agreement between us and the federal government, the existing partner will have the right of first refusal,” Okoronkwo said. Aiteo holds a share of 45% in Oil Mining Lease 29, with state-owned NNPC holding the remainder.

Aiteo currently pumps about 90,000 bpd of oil and forecasts production of 250,000 bpd in five years under the planned expansion. Daily natural gas production would increase six-fold to 300 Mmcf/d in the period, Okoronkwo said