Dana Gas of Sharjah has made another gas strike in Egypt’s Nile Delta, the latest in a string of discoveries that have already lifted its Egyptian oil and gas output by 20 per cent this year.

“We are delighted that the extensive work by our exploration team to define drillable prospects, followed by an effective drilling campaign, continues to produce positive results,” said Hany Elsharkawi, the president of the company’s Egyptian unit.

The new discovery at South Abu El Naga is Dana’s fourth this year. The company estimated the reserves at between 50 billion and 90 billion cubic feet of gas, and 1 million and 2 million barrels of condensate, a type of light oil found in gas reservoirs.

The exploration well produced 19.4 million cubic feet per day (cfd) of gas and 1,160 barrels per day (bpd) of condensate in a test of the largest of three pay zones it encountered.

“We are very pleased that this well has been successful,” said Ahmed al Arbeed, the chief executive of Dana. “Dana Gas Egypt’s ability to develop its discoveries in a timely fashion is delivering gratifying increases in our production volumes for 2010.”

The company’s Egyptian operations, built on its acquisition four years ago of the Canadian Centurion Energy International, has become the workhorse sustaining Dana’s bottom line in its regional expansion.

Dana also produces gas and condensate in Iraqi Kurdistan in partnership with its Sharjah affiliate Crescent Petroleum, the Austrian petroleum group OMV and Hungary’s MOL.

Off the UAE coast, Dana and Crescent are developing a gasfield Sharjah shares with Ajman.

In Egypt, none of Dana’s gas finds rank as giants, but taken together they are impressive. Its 10 medium-sized commercial discoveries in the past three years highlight the company’s technical competence.

Yesterday Dana also announced it had started producing gas from its recently discovered Sharabas and Faraskur fields in the Nile Delta.

It said its total Egyptian output at the end of last month was 230 million cfd of gas and 7,000 bpd of condensate and other natural gas liquids, totaling 45,500 barrels of oil equivalent a day.