Ethiopia announced today that the first phase of extraction of natural gas discovered in the Ogaden basin of the Ethiopia-Somali region will begin tomorrow, with an estimated initial profit of up to 1 billion dollars.
The amount of reserve discovered is estimated to be between six and eight billion cubic feet, and both volume and quality point to being economically feasible, according to a statement issued by the Petroleum and Mines Ministry.
Processing is a very expensive business to carry out locally and an agreement was reached with the Chinese company Poly-GCL to install a gas pipeline and transport the energy source to Djibouti, the statement said.
The income figure will even increase in the following years due to the huge reserve,’ the entity assured.
The discovered natural gas is not entirely intended for export, but will also be used for domestic consumption, especially for supply to manufacturing plants.
The discovery is a major phenomenon that is expected to make a significant contribution to sustaining the country’s rapid economic growth in the coming years.
A World Bank report says Ethiopia set a target to increase the current ratio of 1.5 per cent of natural resources to GDP from 1.5 per cent to 10 per cent by 2025.
The natural gas prospect is not limited, according to the authorities, in the Ogaden region, hence the extensive exploration activities of local and foreign companies in the Rift Valley, Gambella, Afar and the Amhara States.