Mauritania has signed a production-sharing contract (PSC) for the BirAllah field with BP and Kosmos Energy.
The field holds around 80 trillion cubic feet of gas, the Ministry of Petroleum, Mines and Energy said. This is more than the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim (GTA) field, which is under development.
The oil minister, Abdessalam Ould Mohamed Saleh, signed the agreement today with BP’s vice president for Mauritania and Senegal Emil Ismayilov and Kosmos regional head Todd Niebruegge.
The PSC runs for 30 months, the statement said. This should give the companies and state sufficient time to reach a business plan. The previous exploration phase of the C8 block, which holds BirAllah, expired in June 2022.
It expects to carry out engineering studies during this period and aim for a final investment decision (FID) in the first half of 2025. BP and Kosmos have previously said BirAllah may constitute a separate LNG hub, with capacity of around 10 million tonnes per year.
BirAllah is around 60 km north of the GTA development and around 100 km offshore. The statement said Mauritania would hold a 29% stake as part of its drive to secure the greatest benefit.
The ministry went on to say it intended to maximise local content in the development of BirAllah, particularly around the port of Ndiago. The plan would involve processing and export facilities onshore at Ndiago.
Developing BirAllah would transform Mauritania’s economy, the ministry said, and confirm the country’s position as a gas producer. The gas field would also provide scope for petrochemical industries and steel processing.
Kosmos, in August, said the participants had agreed the major terms and conditions for the PSC. The company also noted the possibility that a development plan for BirAllah may also encompass the Orca find.
Kosmos drilled the initial discovery well on BirAllah in November 2015. It then drilled the Orca-1 in the fourth quarter of 2019, also finding pay. The company carried out appraisal studies and concept design on the two finds in 2021.