Eni said that the Firenze floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel, which is to be deployed at the Baleine oil and gas field, has left Dubai to its destination in the waters of Côte d’Ivoire.

The Italian energy company is partnered by Ivorian state-owned national oil and gas company PetroCi in the offshore oil and gas field that spans over the CI-101 and CI-802 blocks.

According to Eni, FPSO Firenze will enable the start-up of production at the Baleine field, which to date is the largest hydrocarbon discovery made in Côte d’Ivoire.

The discovery is estimated to hold 2.5 billion barrels of oil and 3.3 trillion cubic feet of associated gas. It was made in July 2022 following the drilling of the Baleine East 1X well in the CI-802 block.

In September 2021, the Italian firm made an oil discovery in the CI-101 block.

Eni claimed that the development of the Baleine oil and gas field will also be the first net-zero emission project in Africa in terms of Scope 1 and 2.

To be renamed Baleine upon its arrival in Cote d’Ivoire, FPSO Firenze has been refurbished and upgraded for preparing it for the treatment of up to 15,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) of oil and nearly 25 million cubic feet per day (Mcfd/d) of associated gas.

The Italian oil and gas firm stated: “Eni’s phased development model and fast track have proven to be effective, as the project is set to start production less than 2 years from the Baleine 1X discovery well and one and a half years after the FID.

“Eni is already progressing swiftly on the second phase of the project forecasting a start-up of production by December 2024 after having taken the FID in December 2022.”

The company said that the entire gas produced from the Baleine field will be delivered onshore through a newly laid export pipeline.

Currently, installation of the subsea production system and well completion campaign are in progress. These are expected to help Eni in achieving an expedited production start-up at the Baleine oil and gas field by June 2023.