Almost 2,000km long, the pipeline operated by China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) will help the impoverished country increase its oil production five-fold by linking to new fields being developed in the Agadem Rift Basin.
"The pipeline will be the longest in Africa, so everything will be ready by July or August 2023, so our production will reach 110,000 barrels per day (bpd) from 20,000 now," Mahamane Sani Mahamadou said late on Wednesday, 19 October.
Most of the roughly 90,000 bpd of crude will be destined for export and the rest used as feedstock for Niger's 20,000-bpd refinery, which might be upgraded, he added, speaking on the sidelines of the Africa Energy Week conference in Cape Town.
Mahamadou said the pipeline project cost about $2.5bn to build, with the total rising to close to $5bn if CNPC's new oil fields development in Agadem were included.
As more fields are developed by British firm Savannah Energy and Algerian state oil company Sonatrach, Niger was bullish for oil production to increase further by the turn of the decade, Mahamadou said.
"They have been doing some exploration for the past few years and they are now trying to move into the development stage," he added.
"So we think by 2024/25 our production will increase to 150,000 bpd, and hopefully by 2030, we are pretty sure, considering the potential we have in Niger, it will be at 250,000 to 300,000 bpd at least."
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