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South Sudan, China, Malaysia discuss raising oil output: S Sudan minister

South Sudan, China and Malaysia have discussed the need to increase oil production in South Sudan, oil minister Stephen Dhieu Dau said in Juba on Friday.

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South Sudan currently produces 165,000 b/d of crude oil, a drop of nearly 30% since conflict erupted in Africa's newest country in December 2013.

Before the conflict, pitting President Salva Kiir's army against forces loyal to former vice-president Riek Machar, in December 2013, South Sudan used to produce 245,000 b/d.

Machar's rebel forces shut down the oil fields in Unity state in January 2014.


Prior to the shut down, Unity state, on the border with Sudan, used to produce 45,000 b/d of crude oil.

Dau returned from an official trip to China and Malaysia on Thursday.

"I was invited by our partners CNPC in Beijing and Petronas in Kuala Lumpur...During our meetings we discussed strategic issues relating to the development of oil facilities, capacity building and increasing oil production," Dau told the state-owned South Sudan Television

He did not disclose how much they would increase the oil production.

Hopes to increase oil production hinge on next week's peace talks in neighboring Ethiopia.

China, the main investor in South Sudan's oil industry, is involved in search for peace in the country.

State-owned China National Petroleum Corporation, or CNPC, has a 40% stake in South Sudan's oil industry, followed by Malaysia's Petronas, and India's ONGC Videsh Limited, or OVL.

--Moyiga Nduru, newsdesk@platts.com
--Edited by Jonathan Dart, jonathan.dart@platts.com