Oil has dominated the economy of Congo Brazzaville since the entry of supermajors Total and Eni in 1968. The country’s first oilfield, Pointe Indienne, was discovered in 1951 and production started in 1957. According to an EITI report, oil accounted for 80 percent of government revenue and 90 percent of exports before the plunge in oil prices.
The Republic of the Congo is currently the third largest oil producing country in sub-Saharan Africa, after Nigeria and Angola. In 2016, Congo Brazzaville’s oil production was 238,000 barrels of oil per day. Today, the country’s oil production has risen to over 300,000 barrels a day. In the same vein, proven oil reserves have increased from 1.5bn barrels in 2000 to 1.98bn barrels in 2019, according to the latest OPEC Annual Statistical Bulletin.
Congo Brazzaville is a mature petroleum province, and has been one of Africa’s largest oil producers since the 1970s. Although output fell during the 2000s, the entry of deep-water fields since 2008 provided a temporary production boost. With new projects scheduled to boost output by more than 30 percent by 2020, production is expected to increase to 350, 000 barrels per day as new offshore fields come online.