The Amukpe-Escravos Pipeline Project (AEPP), a Joint Venture (JV) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), and Pan Ocean Oil Corporation pipeline project which is expected to offer an option to the “much troubled” Trans Forcados Pipeline (TFP) for crude oil export from mid-western oil producers in the Niger Delta, has been scheduled to come on stream before the end of the third quarter of this year.
The contract, which involves the installation of a 20-inche pipeline across the 67 kilometres route, will have the capacity to handle 160,000 barrels of oil per day (BOPD) with remote manifolds to accommodate third parties’ crude oil evacuation to the Escravos Tank farm.
Speaking on the success of the project, Senior Pipeline Engineer and Project Lead, AEPP, John Okusolubo, said: “The primary objective of AEPP is to ensure that there is no disruption to crude oil export like the scenario we experienced on the TFP over the past 16 months where there was a total collapse of crude export. Nigeria’s experience and history has shown that it is not wise to be highly dependent on a particular source that is why we have AEPP as alternative to TFP, which has been our major means of exporting crude oil as a JV partner.”
According him, the construction of the AEPP entails the use of continuous Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) method to install the entire pipeline length for the purpose of security from the act of vandalism, which is prevalent in the domain.
He said the project’s objective is to provide Pan Ocean JV and other Niger Delta mid-western producers like Seplat, Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), Conoil, Sahara, and other oil producers in the area an alternative export pipeline route to the existing TFP that has been a casualty of many militant attacks.
Nigeria’s crude export capability dwindled in the past two years because of massive incidences of vandalism. The TFP has a daily capacity of 240,000 bpd, with average daily flows ranging between 200,000 bpd and 240,000 bpd. Amid it’s shutdown, Nigeria’s crude oil production fell from 2 million bpd to as low as 1.27 million bpd, thereby losing its position as Africa’s number one producer, falling behind Angola many times over the past year.