With exploration expected to increase following the National Agency of Petroleum, Gas and Biofuel’s opening proposals for the latest bid licensing round for offshore blocks in the Lower Congo and Kwanza Basins in April 2022, oil production in Angola is expected to see an increase, further reaffirming the country’s newfound position.

Up until May, Nigeria stood as the biggest producer with output estimated at 1.22 million bpd. However, due to production declines in legacy oilfields and delayed exploration attributed to post-COVID-19 and energy transition capital expenditure trends, the country witnessed production cuts by 195,000 bpd to 1.02 million bpd from April to May 2022.

This reduction represents the biggest output decline out of all OPEC member states. As exploration ramps up across the continent, however, and new fields come online, the competition for the top spot is expected to become even more fierce.