COTONOU (AFP) – Benin said Thursday that it had discovered 87 million barrels of oil off its coast, a tiny amount compared to neighbouring Nigeria’s reserves, but which could boost the small country’s economy.
“We have discovered oil in a significant commercial quantity with Sapetro company which works on Bloc 1 of the sedimentary basin off Seme Podji coast”, energy minister Barthelemy Kassa told AFP.
Sapetro is a Nigerian gas exploration and production company.
Its chief executive, Daisy Danjuma, wife of a former Nigerian army chief Theophilus Danjuma, said that first commercial oil production will begin in late 2014.
Kassa said the discovery would help to finance the country’s development projects.
“It is a historic discovery for our country because this will enable us to finance our development projects,” he stated.