Gabon wants to put an end to fuel shortages

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For the past two years, Gabon, the 5th oil-producing country in sub-Saharan Africa, has been unable to secure its supplies of petroleum products. Hence the hand stretched out to satisfy the national demand. To the point that Togo became in two years its main supplier.

For the Ministry of hydrocarbons, urgent action is needed in 2019. It is then a question of "reducing the delivery times of the Gabonese Refinery Company (Sogara) by the availability of two docking docks at Owendo for ships transporting petroleum products: one with low draught and the other at strong allowing the docking of vessels with high tonnage ". The emphasis will also be placed on the increase in autonomy of the implementation by Gabon oil marketing of a second deposit of petroleum products. According to petroleum Minister Pascal Houangni Ambouroue, "this deposit would double the capacity available in the Owendo area in white products and would also serve as a storage place for methanol, a component in the manufacture of biofuel" .

Government measures also extend to the search for better availability of butane gas throughout the territory. Hence the acquisition by the Gabonese petroleum products storage company (SGEPP) of new installations, already in service, which will allow the butane gas filling Centre to regain a level of performance which facilitates access to households to this product.

As a reminder, the situation that Gabon is experiencing today is due to the impacts of the natural decline of its mature fields, the production interruptions for machine maintenance work and the delay in the implementation of certain development, in the first three quarters of 2018.

During this period, domestic crude oil production declined by 10.2% to 7,143,000 metric tons. At the same time, exports contracted from 8.9% to 6,594,000 metric tons, mainly oriented towards Asia, which absorbs 77.7% of this production.

On the other hand, crude oil prices were appreciated, with increases of 38.3% and 40.8% respectively for Brent (71.79 dollars per barrel) and the average price of Gabonese crude (70.41 per barrel) in an international context marked by risks of supply voltage. Finally, the depreciation of the order of 7% of the average exchange rate of the dollar compared to the CFA franc at the end of September 2018, to 549.36 FCFA for a US dollar against 590.5 FCFA in September 2017 did not fix anything.

Bernard Bangda/VivAfrik

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