Greece’s fledgling oil sector steps up production


Greece’s sole oil producer, Energean Oil & Gas, has increased daily production by 60 percent since last year, it said on Thursday, as the debt-laden country seeks to exploit its limited oil reserves to boost its public finances.

While plunging crude prices have deterred spending globally on oil projects, Greece is forging ahead with investment in the industry.

Energean, 45 percent-owned by US hedge fund Third Point, said it had increased production to 3,000 barrels per day (bpd) from two oil fields off the northern Greek island of Thassos, after concluding the first of 15 planned drillings as part of its $200 million investment to pump more crude out of the sites.

“Despite a very negative international environment with a 70 percent drop in oil prices since 2004… a Greek firm managed to pump new oil amid political uncertainty and tough business conditions in 2015,” CEO Mathios Rigas stated.

Energean is sticking to its new drilling program to tap proven oil reserves, estimated at 30 million barrels off Thassos, and aims to increase daily production to about 10,000 bpd by end-2017.