Middle East / Africa

Cote d'Ivoire flag
Summary | Profile

Country profile: Cote d'Ivoire

Location: Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Ghana and Liberia
Climate: tropical along coast, semiarid in far north; three seasons - warm and dry (November to March), hot and dry (March to May), hot and wet (June to October)
Terrain: mostly flat to undulating plains; mountains in northwest
Size: 322460 sq. km total (Land area: 318000 sq. km  Water area: 4460 sq.km)
Population: 18,373,060
Languages: French (official), 60 native dialects with Dioula the most widely spoken
Government: republic; multiparty presidential regime established 1960 note: the government is currently operating under a power-sharing agreement mandated by international mediators
Capital city: Yamoussoukro
Legal system: based on French civil law system and customary law; judicial review in the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Currency: Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note

Country profile

Côte d’Ivoire’s oil industry started to take off in 2001 during a period of civil war. By 2007, oil exports represented 28 percent of the governments export revenues, surpassing cocoa and coffee, the country’s traditional export commodities. The majority of Côte d’Ivoire’s electricity is generated through natural gas-powered stations with hydroelectricity accounting for around 20 percent. While gradually becoming a net oil exporter, International Energy Agency (IEA) data indicates that more than half of domestic energy needs are met by combustible renewables and waste, mainly in the form of biomass.

There are several foreign companies participating in the Ivorian oil industry and, as of May 2008, Côte d’Ivoire became a candidate country for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). As such, it has two years to become compliant with the EITI criteria and undergo validation. Membership could further boost foreign investment in the oil, natural gas and mining sectors.

Cote d'Ivoire's economy is heavily reliant on agriculture. The country's primarily exports include cocoa, coffee and timber. Together, the revenues from these exports make up approximately 40% of Cote d'Ivoire's gross domestic product (GDP), and approximately 70% of the total export earnings.

The West African state of Ivory Coast is known more as an oil refining country rather than as an oil producing one. While it does not have the prolific offshore oil fields of Nigeria, it does possess a modest upstream oil industry.

Its recoverable oil reserves have been estimated at 100 million barrels and recoverable gas reserves at 1.1 Tcf. Oil producing fields are Lion and Panthere (condensates).

The national oil company, Petroci, was established in 1975. Petroci was restructured in 1998 and four new entities were created: Petroci Holding, a fully state-owned company that is responsible for the state's portfolio management in the oil sector and the three subsidiaries; Petroci Exploration-Production, responsible for upstream hydrocarbon activities; Petroci-Gaz, responsible for development of the gas sector; and Petroci Industries-Services, responsible for all other related services. Up to 49% interest in the three subsidiaries is available to private sector investors. Petroci's role currently includes the development and maintainance of the main database on Cote d'Ivoire's oil assets, and the assumption of minority participation - generally between 5% and 15% - in the offshore ventures operated by international companies.

The gas reserves discovered in the 1980’s have begun to be developed and utilised. The main producing fields are Panthere, Kudu, Eland, Ibex, Gazelle and Foxtrot. The Ivory Coast is poised to become a regional gas exporter.

The downstream sector is an important part of the economy. Côte d’Ivoire has a complex refinery at Abidjan with an adjacent bitumen plant. The state’s interest in both plants has been scheduled for privatisation. The refinery receives crude via pipeline from the Lion and Panthere fields. It also receives crude from Nigeria. A major pipeline project from Côte d’Ivoire to Cameroon is being planned.

The Ivory Coast is self sufficient in producing refined petroleum products and is also a major supplier to the West African region. Six major oil companies are involved in marketing products in Côte d’Ivoire as well as the local PetroIvoire.

The Foxtrot offshore gas field was discovered along with the Panthere gas and condensate field in 1993 and the Lion oilfield in 1994, both of which came on stream in the mid 1990’s. The product is intended for use in local power generation with excess being sold to Ghana. Addax reworked the aging Espoir oil field in 1996, and a consortium led by Ranger Oil intend to develop the abandoned field at a cost of $250 million with initial production being estimated at 20,000 to 25,000 bpd.


Energy production and consumption

Oil Gas
Production: 57,700 bbl/day (2005 est.) 1 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Consumption: 27,000 bbl/day (2005 est.) 1 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Exports: 85,780 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Imports: 76,730 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Reserves: 250 million bbl (2007 est.) 27 billion cu m (2006 est.)
Major fields:

Cote d'Ivoire - recent news

23 Nov 23
Cote d'Ivoire: The President of Cote d’Ivoire Alassane Ouattara and Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi celebrate Baleine start-up
Eni and its partner Petroci have successfully initiated production from Baleine in August this year, achieving a time-to-market of less than two years from the giant discovery. Full field development is expected to enable the production of up to 150,000 bbl/d.
03 Oct 23
Cote d'Ivoire: Altera awarded contracts with Eni for the Baleine field
Altera Infrastructure has been awarded contracts for redeployment of the FPSO Voyageur Spirit and the shuttle tanker Nordic Brasilia for the Baleine Phase 2 project, located offshore Côte d'Ivoire. The vessels are set for deployment on the Baleine field with a 15-year firm contract.
27 Sep 23
Cote d'Ivoire: CGG commences Cote d’Ivoire reimaging project near Baleine field
CGG has announced the start of a major new multi-client 3D PSDM reimaging program in the Tano Basin offshore Côte d’Ivoire in association with the country’s Direction Générale des Hydrocarbures (DGH) and national oil company, PETROCI. The 6,400 sq km reimaged seismic data set is located near the recent world-class Baleine field.
28 Aug 23
Cote d'Ivoire: Eni starts production from Baleine Field in Cote d’Ivoire with its partner PETROCI
Eni has started production of oil and gas from the Baleine Field, located in the waters offshore Côte d’Ivoire. This milestone comes less than two years after the discovery in September 2021 and less than a year and a half after the Final Investment Decision. This marks the first emissions-free - Scope 1 and 2 - production project in Africa.
18 Jul 23
Cote d'Ivoire: PGS prepares new GeoStreamer data for Cote d’Ivoire
PGS is currently processing over 2,000 sq km of new broadband 3D seismic data for offshore Côte d’Ivoire Data, for delivery in August 2023. The data benefits from the latest KPSTM processing to image prolific Cretaceous reservoir targets.

Cote d'Ivoire - more news

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