Ivory Coast on Wednesday announced a major discovery of oil and natural gas following a deep-water search by Italian firm Anne.
Energy Minister Thomas Kemara said the discovery was estimated at between 1.5 billion and 2 billion barrels of oil and 1.8-2.4 trillion cubic feet (51 million cubic meters) of gas.
He said the development would “greatly increase Ivory Coast’s proven reserves in the years to come”.
The 3,445-meter-deep well was dug 60km (40 miles) off the coast in 30 days, Annie said.
The firm added that it would now further explore the broader search possibilities.
185 million investment in 2019 Ivory Coast Anne and French firm Total signed agreements to explore the possibility of increasing Ivorian production.
Ivory Coast has identified 51 oil fields to date, of which four are in production, 26 are in exploration and the remaining 21 are still being captured.
In 2014, Total said the research showed “very promising” prospects.
In addition to Total and Annie, the UK’s Tulu Oil has also announced significant discoveries in Ivorian offshore oil reserves in recent years.