FPSO Léopold Sédar Senghor; Courtesy of Woodside

FPSO arrival brings Woodside closer to first oil from Senegal’s first offshore development

As a floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) unit destined for Senegal’s first offshore oil development arrives in the African country, Australia’s energy giant Woodside is closing in on the first oil from the project. Currently, the Australian player is laying the groundwork to put the project into production mode in mid-2024.

FPSO Léopold Sédar Senghor; Courtesy of Woodside

The arrival of the FPSO Léopold Sédar Senghor approximately 100 kilometers offshore Dakar, Senegal, comes after Seatrium delivered the vessel to MODEC Offshore Production Systems on December 27, 2023, which enabled the FPSO to embark on a journey to its final destination. This production unit will work for Woodside on the Sangomar field development Phase 1, which is Senegal’s first offshore oil development.

While highlighting that the FPSO arrival milestone marked an important step on the road to first production, Meg O’Neill, Woodside’s CEO, underlined: “We are proud to be Senegal’s first offshore oil project and firmly believe that this project will prove to be important to Senegal’s future development and prosperity.

In addition to developing Senegal’s energy resources, we have already begun working with the government of Senegal, local businesses and communities to develop programs that create business opportunities, build local capabilities, foster employment opportunities, and bring broad economic benefits as a result of our operations.

Woodside sees the FPSO’s arrival offshore Senegal as “a significant step” toward achieving the first production from the Sangomar field, which is targeted for mid-2024. This also marks the beginning of the next phase of the project, encompassing the commissioning of the FPSO and hooking up the 23 production, gas, and water injection wells that make up the Sangomar Phase 1 field development.

“The completion of this phase of the project is only possible through strong partnerships with the Senegalese government, joint venture participant PETROSEN, and our contracting partners, all of whom have worked professionally and co-operatively since the final investment decision in January 2020,” added O’Neill.

The Sangomar Phase 1 field development includes a stand-alone FPSO with subsea infrastructure and an expected production capacity of about 100,000 barrels/day. Woodside has been working on the Sangomar field development Phase 1, targeting around 230 million barrels of crude oil, since the project was sanctioned in January 2020.

As a result, Woodside awarded the contract for the supply of the FPSO, named after Senegal’s first president, Leopold Sédar Senghor, to MODEC that same year. The vessel was converted from a very large crude carrier (VLCC) into a fit-for-purpose FPSO. Initially, the first oil was anticipated in late 2023.

However, things changed in July 2023, thus, the first oil is now targeted for mid-2024. The total project cost is expected to be $4.9 – 5.2 billion, an increase from the previous cost estimate of $4.6 billion, after a cost and schedule review.

The FPSO Leopold Sédar Senghor, which will be moored in waters about 780 meters deep, is designed to produce 100,000 barrels of oil per day and will be able to store approximately 1.3 million barrels of crude oil.