The Secretary General of the Organization of Petroleum Producing Countries, Nigerian Mohammed Barkindo, arrived in Congo-Brazzaville on Sunday evening. This is the first visit by an OPEC official to this country, the 4th largest producer of black gold south of the Sahara.

“Congo has an essential role to play in the global energy industry and OPEC plans to encourage it,” said Mohammed Sanusi Barkindo, quoted in a press release sent by the Congolese Ministry of Hydrocarbons.

During his stay, scheduled until August 25, the OPEC secretary general is due to meet several officials, including Prime Minister Anatole Collinet Makosso and Head of State Denis Sassou Nguesso, and visit at least one platform off the coast of Pointe-Noire, the economic capital (south).

Arrived in the evening at Brazzaville airport from Nigeria, Mr. Barkindo was greeted by Bruno Jean-Richard Itoua, Congolese Minister of Hydrocarbons, AFP noted.

Recognized as the fourth largest oil producer south of the Sahara, far behind Nigeria, Angola and Equatorial Guinea, Congo-Brazzaville joined OPEC in 2018.

With a coastline of 170 km, the Congo became a producer and exporter of oil from 1973, relegating timber to second place.

Officially, the country’s proven reserves are 2.9 billion barrels. Its daily production is 336,000 barrels.

68% of production ensured by the French group Total, which was renewed in 2020, and for 20 years, the operating contract for the Djeno terminal where production from all fields is stored, before export.

Brazzaville created its own company, the Société Nationale des Pétroles du Congo (SNPC), in 1998. The city is home to the headquarters of the APPO (Association of African Petroleum Producing Countries).