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Towards a More Competitive Oil Market: GOC Acquires Assala Assets in Gabon

The share purchase agreement – signed February 15 – supports Gabon’s efforts to boost oil production and attract further investment to its upstream sector. 

The share purchase agreement – signed February 15 – supports Gabon’s efforts to boost oil production and attract further investment to its upstream sector. 

Under efforts to enhance Gabon’s position as a competitive oil and gas market, Gabon Oil Company (GOC) has acquired the Gabonese assets of US private equity firm Carlyle – the owner of Gabon-focused oil and gas company, Assala Energy. The African Energy Chamber (AEC) – the voice of Africa’s energy sector – congratulates GOC on this acquisition, which showcases its commitment to maximizing Gabon’s oil production and generating more jobs, contracts and activity in the sector.

Assala Energy holds seven onshore production licenses in Gabon – of which it operates six –along with a pipeline network and the Gamba export terminal. Representing the country’s second-largest producer, the company has concentrated on brownfield assets in Gabon and implemented high-quality maintenance, risk management, workovers and well interventions to maximize production from mature fields.

The acquisition reflects Gabon’s broader oil and gas sector revitalization strategy, which will be explored at the upcoming Invest in African Energy (IAE) forum in Paris this May, along with the country’s world-class energy initiatives.

As one of Africa’s most historic oil producers, Gabon aims to increase production to 220,000 barrels per day on the back of acceleratedon – and offshore exploration, new investments from IOCs and the redevelopment of mature and marginal fields. While historically serving as a partner to the country’s operators – operating only the onshore Mbouma field – GOC is seeking to transform into a more competitive upstream player. The state-backed firm is currently in talks with foreign partners to acquire new technologies aimed at halting declining production and optimizing mature fields. 

Gabon’s exploration and development prospects – as well as decisive opportunities in gas recovery and monetization, refining and downstream industries – will be on display at the upcoming IAE 2024, set to connect Africa’s energy and infrastructure opportunities with the global investment community. For Gabon, the forum will serve as a critical platform to promote its revitalizationstrategy and initiate more deals in the sector.

“We encourage and support Gabon in taking on this world-class initiative, led by President Brice Oligui Nguema and Minister of Petroleum and Gas Marcel Abéké. This deal not only demonstrates Gabon’s commitment to increasing its hydrocarbon production, but also attracting more investment in key energy assets. The Chamber looks forward to Gabon showcasing its upstream opportunitiesin Paris this May. This new dynamism is good for Gabon and for the Chamber, who stand shoulder to shoulder in driving the Gabonese and African oil and gas industry forward,” states NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman of the AEC.

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