By Kwasi Kpodo
ACCRA (Reuters) - British oil firm Tullow Oil said on Thursday it hoped production from its Jubilee oil field in Ghana would reach 120,000 barrels per day by "early next year", narrowing the possible timing of a target delayed twice already.
The offshore field started pumping in December 2010, vaulting Ghana's economic growth into the double-digits, but plateau output has been put off twice in the second half of 2011 by technical problems.
"It's only a technical problem. The Jubilee resources are intact so we are hoping to reach the 120,000 bpd (target) early next year," Tullow spokesman Gayheart Mensah told Reuters.
The outlook narrows down guidance provided by Tullow Chief Financial Officer Ian Springett last month that the 120,000 bpd target would be achieved "sometime during 2012".
Analysts have said a lack of clarity on Jubilee - Tullow's only major producing field - was impacting the stock price of the company. Tullow shares were down 2.4 percent at 1830
The onset of oil revenues in Ghana, also a major cocoa and gold producer, has helped propel annual growth to over 16 percent, making it one of the world's fastest growing economies. But significant delays to targeted oil production could dent revenues to the treasury.
Another Tullow official said on Thursday the company was not "overly worried" about a maritime boundary dispute between Ghana and its western neighbour Ivory Coast.
The two countries are currently in protracted talks on offshore boundary limits after Ivorian authorities produced a map claiming parts of the Jubilee field.
"This is a political issue that will be resolved at governmental level," Rosalind Kainyah, vice president for External Affairs told Reuters.