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Regional Update


BG Group discovered gas in the Taachui-1 well and sidetrack in Block 1, offshore Tanzania. The drillship Deepsea Metro I drilled Taachui-1 close to the western boundary of Block 1, then sidetracked the well and drilled to a total depth of 4215 m. The well encountered gas in a single gross column of 289 m within the targeted Cretaceous reservoir interval. Net pay totaled 155 m. Estimates of the mean recoverable gas resources are around 1 Tcf. BG is operator (60%), with partners Ophir Energy (20%) and Temasek Holdings (20%).

Statoil (65%) and co-venturer ExxonMobil (35%) made a sixth discovery—the Piri-1 well—in Block 2 offshore Tanzania. Piri-1 was drilled by drillship Discoverer Americas, at a water depth of 2360 m. Statoil estimates Piri-1’s natural gas in place at 2 to 3 Tcf. Statoil operates on behalf of Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation.

Circle Oil encountered 15 m of net pay in the SAH-W1 well on the Sebou permit onshore Morocco. The well was drilled to a measured depth of 1263 m. Wireline logging confirmed the presence of three gas-bearing zones within the target Guebbas sands, and subsequent pressure testing in the 6-in. hole confirmed permeable high-pressure reservoirs. Circle (75%) is the operator, with partner ONHYM (25%).

Tullow Oil encountered hydrocarbons in its Ngamia-2 appraisal well, located in Block 10BB, northern Kenya. The well was drilled 1.7 km from the Ngamia-1 discovery well to test the northwest flank of the prospect. The well encountered up to 39 m of net oil pay and 11 m of net gas pay and appears to have identified a new fault block trap north of the main Ngamia accumulation. Africa Oil said the reservoirs were high quality, with 200 m of net reservoir sands with good permeability. Tullow (50%) is operator, with partner Africa Oil (50%).


SapuraKencana Petroleum has made four discoveries of nonassociated natural gas in the SK408 production sharing contract area, 120 km offshore Sarawak, Malaysia, in the Central Luconia gas province. All four wells discovered natural gas within the primary target Late Miocene carbonate reservoirs. The first well, Teja-1, encountered a gross gas column of 219 m. The second well, Gorek-1, encountered a gross gas column of 235 m. The third (Legundi-1) and fourth (Larak-1) wells, both drilled in down-flank locations, encountered gross gas columns of 139 m and 333 m, respectively. SapuraKencana (40%) is the operator, with partners Petronas (30%) and Shell (30%).


AWE spudded the Oi-1 exploration well in PMP 38158, offshore Taranaki, New Zealand, in 120 m of water. Oi-1 will be drilled vertically to a planned total depth of 3881 m to evaluate the hydrocarbon potential of a 4-way dip closed structure similar to the producing Tui, Amokura, and Pateke fields, targeting the same F10 reservoir sandstones. AWE operates (31.25%) Oi-1, with partners Pacific Petroleum (50%) and New Zealand Oil & Gas (18.75%).

Statoil started drilling its third well in the part of Australia’s South Georgina basin in the Northern Territory, in exploration permit 103. A total of 99.1 m of core was recovered in a continuous coring process, which penetrated the Lower Arthur Creek and Thorntonia formations. Statoil is operator (30%), with partner PetroFrontier (70%).


Using the jackup rig, Maersk Giant, Centrica started drilling operations at the Butch South West prospect, in around 65 m water depth in the Norwegian North Sea. The well, 8/10-6S, is adjacent to the 2011 Butch discovery and is close to existing infrastructure in the Ula field, approximately 7 km to the northwest. It is possible Butch could become a standalone development if Butch South West is successful. Centrica is the operator (40%), with partners Suncor (30%), Faroe Petroleum (15%), and Tullow Oil (15%).

Total has spudded exploration well 34/6-2S, 128 km west of Florø, in the PL554 block of the Garantiana prospect, offshore Norway. The well is being drilled by semi-submersible Leiv Eiriksson. Total is operator (40%), with partners Spike Exploration (20%), Svenska Petroleum Exploration (20%) and Det norske oljeselskap (20%).

Hurricane Energy completed testing of its appraisal well in the Lancaster discovery in P1368, West of Shetland. The well—to be suspended as a future producer—tested at a maximum sustainable natural flow rate of 5,300 BOE/D, and at a maximum sustainable flow rate, using artificial lift, of 9,800 BOE/D. Hurricane (100%) is operator.


Mari Petroleum Company’s 3800-m deep Ghauri X-1 well, located in the Jhelum district, in Punjab, Pakistan, flowed 22°API oil from the Sakessar formation at an initial average rate of 1,193 B/D. After acid treatment, flow increased to 5,500 B/D with a 1,100-psi flowing wellhead pressure at 32/64-in. choke size. Mari Petroleum (35%) is operator, with Pakistan Petroleum Limited (35%) and MOL Group (30%).


Questerre Energy started drilling its second well (14-29-63-6W6M) targeting the Montney formation in the Kakwa-Resthaven area of Alberta, about 75 km south of Grande Prairie. The well will be drilled to a measured depth of 5900 m, including a horizontal leg of approximately 2000 m. Drilling is expected to take 2 months. Questerre (100%) is the operator.


Premier Oil and Noble Energy booked a semisubmersible rig for their respective 2015 drilling campaigns in the Falkland Islands/Islas Malvinas. The companies’ rig-sharing agreement stipulates the rig will drill a minimum of six firm wells. Premier’s Zebedee and Isobel/Elaine prospects are slotted to be drilled first; Noble booked the third and fourth slots. The final two Premier slots will likely be for drilling the Jayne East and Chatham/Sea Lion West Flank wells.

GeoPark has drilled and completed the Ache-1 exploration well, located on the Fell block in Chile, to a total depth of 9,694 ft. A production test through different chokes in the Tobifera formation resulted in an average production rate of 9.2 MMcf/D of gas, and approximately 80 B/D of 47°API condensate. Further production history is required to determine stabilized flow rates and the extent of the reservoir. GeoPark (100%) is the operator.