Oil in Jordan

Oil Production50thousand tonnes per year

Oil Recoverable Reserves500thousand tonnes

Jordan has the world’s fifth largest oil shale deposit, which contains about 102 billion barrels of oil. Oil shale can be found on more than 60% of the territory of Jordan and research shows that the oil shale layers in some deposits can be a hundred metres or more thick. Jordan’s oil shale is easily excavated and can be mined in opencast mines. Jordan suffers from a large shortage of energy, which is why it imports more than 90% of its energy from other countries. There is no oil or gas in Jordan, meaning the country is dependent on gas supplies from Egypt. Unfortunately, these gas supplies have stopped on several occasions, and so Jordan is looking for ways to use local resources so that they could produce their own energy at lower costs. In 2006 the Jordanian government signed memoranda with three oil shale companies who wanted to research Jordan’s oil shale in three different deposits. Those companies were Royal Dutch Shell, Enefit, and Jordan Energy and Mining. In 2007 the Jordanian government signed memoranda with Brazil’s Petrobras and with several other companies.

In Jordan, development schedules have been adjusted due to economic conditions, but development projects continue. JOSCO, a wholly owned Shell subsidiary, has drilled and characterised 340 wells to support the selection of its final 1000 km2 lease hold. It activated a small-scale in-situ pilot in September 2015 to calibrate its subsurface models. Oil was pumped to the surface after a few months, and heating will continue until summer 2016. Another approved project by Saudi Arabian Corporation for Oil Shale had intended to start producing shale oil in five years and increase to 30,000 BOPD by 2025, but no current schedule is available. The venture will use the Russian UTT-3000 technology, a version of a hot-burned-shale process.


Oil data represents Crude Oil only, for extra-heavy oil and oil shale please refer to the WER 2013 report oil chapter.