South Sudan’s Petroleum Minister, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, said that the independent state is determined to increase crude oil production by November 2016 to start exports to neighboring Ethiopia, Oil Price reported.
Gatkuoth cited the pre-war crude production levels at 500,000 b/d, with other sources pegging it at 350,000 b/d. He added that oil production has slumped to 130,000 b/d as a result of the state’s ongoing conflict for it’s independence.
Gatkouth said, “We have discussed and agreed to resume oil production in unity and other areas in Upper Nile. . . We have also discussed and agreed to review oil contracts with Chinese companies to do exploration and to continue to operate until 2018. The current contracts will be reviewed and extended,” according to the Sudan Tribune.
After gaining its independent in 2011, the South Sudan controlled about three-fourths of Sudan’s oil production. As a result, Sudan lost roughly 55% of its financial revenues and about two-thirds of its foreign exchange earnings.