The Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) reduced the production of the Italian Eni’s Zohr gas field in the Mediterranean to about 2.4bn cubic feet of gas per day (scf/day), from 3bn scf/day, as the national network’s pressure couldn’t absorb high quantities and the local consumption decreased recently.
For the national network to absorb all Zohr production, the pipelines should typically operate at pressures not less than 70 bar, which is not the case now as production outpace demand, a source in the petroleum sector told Daily News Egypt.
EGAS will also reduce production of other gas fields equally, according to the production rates of each project separately. Gas production of Burullus, North Alexandria, Zohr, and Baltim South West fields have already been reduced.
The source pointed out that the officials of Eni discussed in their meeting with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla, the recent production cuts.
He explained that production cuts would preserve wells from any technical problems and maintain their reserves for a longer period.
Egypt turned to a gas exporter after achieving self-sufficiency in 2018. It became a regional gas centre, as it receives gas from neighbouring countries and reexport it through LNG plants. The country achieved a surplus of domestic production estimated at about 1bn scf/day.
The gas consumption in the electricity sector represents 61% of the total consumption in Egypt, while other sectors: industry, household, and fuel, account for 39%.
Eni linked the 14th and last well in Zohr field to the network last year, bringing the field’s total production to about 3bn scf/day.
Eni completed the development of Zohr field ahead of schedule, which helped local production exceed the market needs. The average production of a well in Zohr ranges between 150m-250m scf/day.
About 58% of Egypt’s gas production come from deep-water fields in the Mediterranean, equivalent to about 4bn scf/day in the last fiscal year.