Answer ... Upstream sector: Tunisia is a small producer of oil and natural gas. Oil production began in 1966, and had reached 118,000 barrels per day by 1980 and 63,000 barrels per day by 2015. The country has been a net importer since 2000. Tunisia’s main deposit was also the first to be discovered: El Borma, discovered in 1964 on the Tunisian-Algerian border.
Offshore production in the Gulf of Gabes is centred on the Ashtart deposit; what at the time was Elf Aquitaine commenced production in the gulf in 1974. Gas production increased in the 2000s thanks to two offshore deposits: Miskar (production commenced in 2006) and Hasdrubal (production commenced in2009). These two deposits are now experiencing a natural decline in production.
The Zarat deposit is scheduled to come into service around 2020 and should boost national production.
Downstream sector: The only refinery in the country, which is managed by the Tunisian Company of Refining Industries, is located in Bizerte. Its capacity is 34,000 barrels per day, which is much less than Tunisia’s national consumption; as a result, the country also imports refined products, primarily diesel. Refined petroleum is essentially imported too.
The Trans-Mediterranean Pipeline – one of the gas pipelines that facilitate the export of Algerian gas to Italy – crosses the Tunisian territory. It has operated since 1983. In return for the pipeline crossing its territory, Tunisia is entitled to 5.625% of the gas, in kind or in money, in accordance with a treaty brokered in 1977. As the capacity of the Trans-Mediterranean Pipeline has gradually increased, so has Tunisia’s quota; added to national production and gas imported directly from Algeria, this meets the country’s consumption requirements.
According to the Energy Information Administration, Tunisia’s consumption in 2015 was 98,000 barrels per day.
Natural gas consumption is in the order of 6.5 cubic kilometres, of which more than half is imported via the Trans-Mediterranean Pipeline. Some 70% of that gas is used for the production of electricity.
Crude oil production (including condensate and liquefied petroleum gas) is mainly located in the following permit areas:
- El Borma;
- Adam; and
Gas resources are located within the following permit areas:
- El Borma;
- Anaguid Est;
- Ghrib; and
- El Bibane.
Answer ... The main players are as follows:
- Anglo Tunisian Oil &Gas;
- CYGAM Energy;
- Winstar Resources;
- Chinook Energy; and
- Africa Hydrocarbons.
Answer ... Oil and gas represents 80% of the energy consumption in Tunisia.
Local oil and gas production is insufficient to cover national consumption needs, so Tunisia is obliged to import most of its oil and gas. The deficit of Tunisia’s energy balance reached TND 435.5 million in January 2020.