Bloomberg News

Ivory Coast Plans Fourfold Rise in Crude Output in 5 Years

June 09, 2011

(Updates with comment from Toungara in third paragraph.)

June 9 (Bloomberg) -- Ivory Coast is planning a fourfold increase in crude oil production in five years as the West African nation, which is recovering from a 4 1/2 month violent post-election crisis, seeks investors in mining and energy.

The world’s top cocoa producer wants oil output to rise to 200,000 barrels a day from the current rate of around 50,000 barrels as new drilling operations begin, said Adama Toungara, minister of mines, oil and energy.

“We’ll have to build an integrated economy of mines and energy sectors,” Toungara, who was named to the post on June 1, told an industry conference in Yamoussoukro, the capital, today.

Toungara is a member of the administration of Alassane Ouattara, the winner of Ivory Coast’s November presidential election. He was prevented from taking office until the April 11 capture of Laurent Gbagbo, who ruled for a decade and refused to cede power after losing the vote.

At least 2,000 were killed in clashes between supporters of the two men, according to the United Nations.

Ivory Coast also wants to triple production of gold from the current 7 metric tons (246,911 ounces) annually over the next four to six years, Toungara said.

The country may “take incentive and attendant measures for companies willing to invest” in its mines, oil and energy industries, he said without providing details.

Randgold Resources Ltd., Cluff Gold Plc and Newcrest Mining Ltd. operate gold mines in Ivory Coast and had their operations disrupted during the post-election conflict.

Ivory Coast neighbors Ghana, where oil production at the offshore Jubilee oil field is expected to reach 120,000 barrels per day by July, according to Tullow Oil Plc, the field’s operator. U.K.-based Tullow also operates in Ivory Coast, where it pumped 3,850 barrels of oil equivalent per day last year, according to its website.

--Editors: Emily Bowers, Karl Maier.

To contact the reporter on this story: Olivier Monnier in Yamoussoukro via Accra at ebowers1@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at asguazzin@bloomberg.net.


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