downstream oil industry is dependent on the importation of refined
Offshore: It is
believed that The Gambia
has good prospectivity for
hydrocarbons (Deepwater PPL Gambia). The area marks the northern extent of the
Casamance-Bissau sub-basin which forms part of the Mauritania -
Senegal - Gambia - Guinea Bissau coastal basin. It is characterised by
prominent halokinetic strata deformation and there are proven petroleum
systems in the area.
Upstream: Although a
non-oil producing nation, The Gambia has legislation, the Petroleum
Act (2004), on the upstream petroleum sector. The objective of the Act
is to ensure the efficient administration and management of the
country’s hydrocarbon resources for the maximum benefit of The Gambia
people. There are 4 companies are involved in the retail of liquid
fuels. They are:
Galp Energia Gambia Ltd
Elton Oil Ltd
Castle Oil Ltd.
Downstream: All petroleum products
consumed in The Gambia are imported. Unlike the upstream, the
downstream lacks a coherent legislation. Government’s interest is
revenue bias and DOSFEA and the Customs Department play major roles in
The Gambia National Petroleum Company (GNPC) is a recent entrant
into the petroleum scene. The company is mandated to participate in
the upstream and downstream operations in the sub-sector sector on the
same terms as any oil company.
Imports & Consumption:
The Gambia is heavily dependent on imports to meet its
petroleum requirements. Petroleum products consumed in the Gambia is
all imported. It is the second most important source of energy in the
country, after fuel wood, accounting for about 17% of total primary energy needs
according to the 2004 energy balance. The petroleum requirements of
the country consist of gasoline (regular and premium), kerosene, diesel oil (gasoil), LPG and jet fuel.
The consumption of liquid
products grew from 86,974 metric tons in 2000 to 108,470 metric tons
in 2004. Only 5% of imported kerosene is use in households as a source
of lighting. There has been a steady growth in the demand for all fuels
including Heavy Fuel Oil,
gasoline and diesel. The main petroleum consuming sectors are
transport, and construction. The Gambia is
heavily dependent on imports to meet its requirements of petroleum
derivatives, including the importation of diesel fuel for generating
electricity. In 2004 The Gambia imported 113 million litres of
Petroleum products are used for transportation (diesel and petrol),
some diesel and gasoline is also used in privately own generation and
some diesel is use for power generation at the various power stations by the
utility company. HFO is used almost exclusively by the national utility for
The main petroleum products of direct household energy use are
kerosene and LPG. Kerosene has been used as household energy for
lighting over many years. Its share of household energy balance is
quite small with bulk of the fuel is consumed by rural households.
Kerosene is a subsidized fuel. LPG is also a subsidized fuel as there
are no import taxes on this energy source so as to encourage its use.
Greater percentage of this fuel is consumed in the urban area.
The Gambia, like most oil importing countries, is susceptible to
any exogenous shocks such as price increases in world oil prices. Any
increases in external costs translate directly to higher importation costs
and as a result higher prices at the pump. Taking into account
Government taxes, any further increase in world oil price will lead to
an erosion of the gains in the country’s development efforts.
Gambia set for oil drilling:
The Gambia's dreams of drilling oil could be realised in two years
time, according to the Chairman of Buried Hill Energy. Roger Haines said his company would start drilling the West African
country's oil in early 2009.
Haines disclosed the news while he was briefing Gambian President,
Yahya Jammeh, on Buried Hill Energy's latest work on the oil
exploration of The Gambia.
He said drilling would start as soon as his company completes
identifying the best sites for establishing drilling rigs.
Chairman Haines Buried Hill Energy had identified five distinct
plates with 26 prospects of oil production, which clearly proved that
The Gambia has more oil potentials than expected.
Haines told President Jammeh that the his company's in-depth technical
work results would easily convince the world about the tiny country's
oil production potentials.
President Yahya Jammeh opened a stormy debated in 2003 when he had
announced the discovery of oil in many parts of the country. While his
supporters hailed the disclosure, opposition downplayed the issue,
describing it as a political tactic.
By staff writer
afrol News: 27 December 2007
Buried Hill Background in Gambia
In 2006, Buried Hill
Energy signed licenses for two deepwater exploration blocks,
offshore The Gambia. These blocks provide over 2,600 square
kilometres of high-quality exploration acreage. Buried Hill
Energy will initiate exploration drilling in 2008.
The Alhamdulilah A1 and A4 Blocks were comprehensively evaluated
by Buried Hill Energy. Its analysis, which made use of
state-of-the art, high-resolution 3D seismic imaging technology,
has identified at least five play fairways and an inventory of
over 22 prospects and leads, in what was traditionally seen as a
Source: Buried Hill website
(Buried Hill Energy (Cyprus) Public Company Limited is an
international oil and gas exploration company focused on West
Africa and Central Asia)
The Government of Gambia issued two licenses to Buried Hill
Energy a Canadian company for the exploration and production of oil
and gas prospect in the offshore areas.
President Yahya Jammeh, who is responsible for energy signed the
licenses while Roger Haines signed on behalf of Buried Hill Energy.
Speaking on behalf of President Jammeh shortly after the signing
ceremony held at Basse, Edward Singhateh SOS for Forestry and
Environment said the licenses which have been signed is a
petroleum exploration and production licenses for two blocks
namely A1 and A4 for the offshore exploration and drilling of
wells and most likely the final production of petroleum in
"This is the first step towards turning Gambia into a city state
as promised by President Jammeh".
He said the BHE company has been chosen to come on board "our
socio-economic development our country. Since he has confidence
in you so do we. "We will do everything within our
responsibilities to ensure not do you have a successful
implementation of your project but you also meet the aspiration
of Gambian people".
For his part, Roger Haines the CEO of BHE thanked President
Jammeh for choosing them out of the lot for the exploration of
oil in Gambia.
"I want to assure the Government that BHE will measure to
exploration as signed".
Speaking earlier on, Mr Fafa Sanyang, Commissioner of Petroleum
exploration said the signing of these licenses will send a
positive signal to oil companies. It will as well attract more
investors in the petroleum sector in Gambia.
Siaka Camara Managing Director of Gambia National Petroleum
Company thanked President Jammeh for having the foresight and
wisdom to take the lead promoting the frontiers of research for
oil and gas prospects in Gambia.
Source: Progressive Africans