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International oil and gas company Trident Energy has announced the commissioning of extensive upgrades at the Okume Field in Equatorial Guinea

Aimed at unlocking the geological capacity of the complex – a conventional oil development located in deep water in Equatorial Guinea comprising five producing oilfields, namely, Okume, Elon, Oveng, Akom North and Ebano – the upgrade will convert 15 gas lift wells to electrical submersible pumps (ESP) by the end of 2022. The upgrade represents a critical step towards improving production in Equatorial Guinea, further positioning both the company and the country as a competitive oil producer.

To prepare for the ESP conversion, Trident Energy announced that the company will upgrade Okume’s central processing facilities (CPF) to maximise production capacity, particularly regarding separation, injection and power generation. The upgrade, to the tune of US$57mn, involves the engineering, procurement, fabrication and installation of over 200,000 man-hours of work, 200 tons of structures, 700 piping spools, 250 valves, 15km of subsea power cables, several hundred fiber optics, eight electrical shelters, 35km of topside cables, new process units and more.

The investment is a great illustration of the company’s strategy to unlock the true value of its mid-life oil and gas assets, with the company now ready to begin the ESP conversion. The objectives of the upgrade are to extend and upgrade the structure of the CPF platform to support new equipment with cantilevers; add two new power turbines to allow for additional ESPs and injection capacity; connect the Echo and Foxtrot platforms with high voltage subsea cables to supply power; to upgrade the separation process to handle the incremental produced fluid and the water injection system to support the reservoir pressure; as well as instrumentation and telecom upgrades.

For the upgrade, Trident Energy’s local team in Equatorial Guinea managed every aspect of the project including project management, supply chain, logistics and coordination. 55% of the services (in-value) were provided by local contractors; 32% of services were provided by regional contractors and only 13% were provided by international contractors, with Trident placing local content at the forefront of the project. For Equatorial Guinea, the project upgrade signals a new era of operational efficiency and production maximisation, while for Trident, a critical step towards improving production at one of the company’s high potential complexes.

With the 2022 edition of the continent premier energy event, African Energy Week (AEW) coming up from October 18-21, 2022, discussions around oilfield enhancement, maximising production and improving efficiency across the oil and gas landscape will be central. AEW 2022 firmly believes in the role oil and gas has and continues to play in Africa’s energy future, and developments such as Trident Energy’s upgrade will take a central focus. While the continent looks at improving oil production in light of declines in mature fields, upgrades such as this will be of vital importance.