The U.S. oil company ExxonMobile has disclosed plan to begin drilling offshore oil well here at the close of the year or in 2017. The Lead Country Manager for ExxonMobile Exploration and Production Liberia Limited Mr. Steven P. Buck made the disclosure in Monrovia on Wednesday, 5 October when he addressed the opening of a media workshop to build general knowledge of the oil and gas sector.
The workshop was facilitated by the International Human Resources Development Corporation (IHRDC) in collaboration with the National Oil Company of Liberia or NOCAL. Mr. Buck said the drill will take place 50 miles or 2500 meters offshores in deep waters.
ExxonMobile signed a Production Sharing Contract (PSC) with the Government of Liberia in 2013 to explore block 13 for subsequent production. Block 13 is situated off the coast of Margibi and Grand Bassa Counties.
An American, Mr. Robert W. Taylor, who is Vice President of the Global Business Development served as lead facilitator during the workshop. He led participants thru a drill of the oil and gas value chain to market, exploration and production cycle, products, employment and skills training to community and local content.
The industry is very new to Liberia, which still heavily relies on petroleum importation to satisfy its energy needs. But euphoria and huge expectations have taken over many Liberians following news of prospects for oil exploration in the country with about some 2000 students currently enrolled in the Department of Geology at the University of Liberia.
In fulfilment of its corporate social responsibility, ExxonMobile is building the capacity of the UL geology department, establishing a computer lab and internet connectivity to provide online education on petroleum energy and exploration.
NOCAL has sent several Liberians abroad to study petroleum energy and related disciplines in the oil and gas sectors.