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Exxon Mobil Corporation XOM announced its decision to exit Equatorial Guinea in the second quarter of 2024, marking the end of nearly three decades of oil drilling activities in the country.
The oil major will transfer its remaining investments to the local government, concluding a chapter that transformed the small West African nation into a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.
The move aligns with ExxonMobil’s long-term strategy, focusing on the fastest-growing, lowest-cost opportunities in regions, such as Guyana and the U.S. Permian Basin.
Equatorial Guinea faced significant challenges in attracting investments to revive its oil sector. The decline in output from key assets like the Zafiro field, once a prolific source of crude, underscores the challenges inherent in sustaining long-term production in the region.
The Zafiro field, which yielded more than 1 billion barrels over two decades, now faces diminishing returns, further emphasizing the rationale behind ExxonMobil’s strategic exit from the region.
ExxonMobil’s CEO, Darren Woods, has emphasised redirecting capital spending toward the most promising prospects, particularly in Guyana, boasting premium oil assets. Exxon Mobil, along with its partners, is experiencing significant success in Guyana, with three projects already exceeding their designed production capacity, collectively yielding 645,000 barrels of oil per day.
XOM’s exit from Equatorial Guinea reflects its evaluation of risk-reward profiles. Despite challenges in the country’s oil sector, this move initiates discussions about the region’s energy future and changes in global oil investment dynamics. (yahoo! finance)