Ghana moved one step closer today to developing a major deepwater oil discovery, operated by an independent African company, Springfield Exploration & Production Limited (SEP), the Operator of the offshore West Cape Three Points Block 2 (WCTP 2). 

Today, a Commercial High Court sitting in Accra ruled in favour of SEP’s application to freeze 30% of revenues received by Eni and Vitol from the sale of crude oil from the Sankofa field, which is operated by Eni Exploration and Production Ghana Limited and the subject matter of the ongoing unitization dispute between Eni and Springfield.

The payment amounts to approximately $40million a month which will be directed to an account agreed by both parties. The court’s order takes effect from today.

Commenting on the ruling, Kevin Okyere, CEO and founder of Springfield, described the ruling as a “welcome vindication of Springfield’s position on the issue of unitization and a positive result”. He said that the Company was forced to take the legal route following Eni’s reluctance to follow the Minister of Energy’s directive and for all parties to reach an amicable resolution to this unfortunate impasse. 

Kevin added “Springfield is not interested in stalling ongoing crude oil production on the Sankofa Field, and believe in fairness and justice for all, irrespective of their size and position.  The consequences of this case for the Ghanaian oil industry will be systemic and immediate”.

Regional oil and gas actors have been under severe pressure following disruptions caused to supply chains in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and market changes triggered by the global energy transition. In the light of such unprecedented challenges,

Springfield believes Ghana cannot afford to delay development of a flagship project capable of contributing significantly to the State’s coffers and ultimately improve the standard of living of Ghanaians.

Kevin concluded by saying that,  “Springfield looks forward to working with Eni as the operator of the unitized field in maximizing the production and the economic benefits for all stakeholders, including the Government and citizens of Ghana”.

Background

The companies have been in dispute since an April 2020 directive was issued by Ghana’s Ministry of Energy to unitize the Afina and Sankofa fields for the purposes of ensuring optimal recovery of the resources in the common reservoir in the interest of all the parties involved, including the State.

The Afina field was drilled in October/November 2019 with an announcement by the company that it had made two discoveries that included gas, critical and light oil at a depth of 1030 metres.

The discovery doubled the already existing proven oil reserves of the Block to 1.5 billion barrels and added 0.7tcf (trillion cubic feet) of gas to the existing discoveries. 

Springfield is the Majority Interest Holder (84%) of West Cape Three Points Block 2, with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation and its exploration company, EXPLORCO, holding the remaining stake.

The ruling could open the way for constructive negotiations and swift agreement in the interest of all parties, including the State, the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, and hard-pressed stakeholders in the country’s nascent energy industry.

Source: https://www.myjoyonline.com/court-orders-eni-to-pay-30-revenue-into-escrow-account/