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Agak ‘partially’ blames oil production decline on ‘inefficient’ machines

Author: Emmanuel Akile | Published: Friday, May 13, 2022

Agak Achuil, the minister of finance during a press conference after returning from Washington DC in the U.S. Thursday April 5, 2022 - Credit | Lou Nelson/Eye Radio

The Minister of Finance and Planning has partly attributed the decline in oil production to ‘inefficient’ pipeline machinery in the flooded oil fields.

Agak Achuil stated that the situation has resulted in low production output.

Speaking to the media in Juba last week, Minister Agak Achuil said the Chinese technology being used in oil production cannot withstand floods.

“Three-quarters of South Sudan is sub-emerged in water and the oil fields in those areas are sub-emerged by the floods. That means the technology our people are using; the Chinese technology cannot get us the oil from all these floods,” he told the media.

The oilfields in the country are located in the low-lying areas of Unity State, Ruweng Administrative Areas and Upper Nile State.

In August last year, the Undersecretary at the Ministry of Petroleum told Eye Radio that South Sudan had experienced a 20-percent decrease in oil production.

Awow Daniel Chuang disclosed that the decrease was from 165,000 barrels per day to 156,000 barrels per day.

This is also down from 180,000 barrels per day in 2019.

Minister Agak said oil production was dwindling and that the country was almost getting nothing.

“… we were almost getting nothing, sometimes half a cargo by the end of the month, and sometimes one cargo by the end of the month, and you know that the oil is shared with those consortiums which dig our oil out,” he said.

He also attributed the decline in oil production to a lack of investment, the coronavirus pandemic, and the on-and-off strike by national staffs.

The seasonal flooding in the country have not only impeded the oil production, but also raised fears of catastrophic environmental pollution.

According to environmental reports, the landscape around the oilfields contained hundreds of flooded-waste pits and soil contaminated with toxic chemicals and heavy metals.

Residents around the oilfields have reported alarming cases of birth defects, miscarriages and other health problems.

In October last year, the Dar Petroleum Field Manager, Deng Ngor told Eye Radio that at least 100 oil wells were affected by flash floods in Paloch oilfield in Maluth County, Upper Nile state.

Paloch oilfield has about 500 oil wells – with a production of more than 120,000 barrels per day.

Minister Agak went on to say cargo of crude oil, sells at nearly 20 million US dollars.

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