Elaine Reynolds
2 May 2018

Implications of Rabat Deep 1 results

Following on from this weeks’ announcement that Eni’s Rabat Deep 1 well offshore Morocco had encountered only limited hydrocarbon indications, partner Chariot Oil & Gas has provided an early set of conclusions regarding the outcome of the well.Under the terms of its farmout to Eni, Chariot was fully carried for the cost of the well.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
28 March 2018

UK independents pick up blocks in Mexico’s Round 3.1

Premier Oil was awarded three blocks, while Cairn Energy has picked up one block in the latest shallow water round offshore Mexico. Premier beat off bids from five other consortia for Block 30,  which was the most hotly contested of the round. The company holds a 30% WI in the Sureste basin block, which will be operated by DEA and partnered by new entrant Sapura.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
20 March 2018

Some way to go for FAR in FAN

FAR has today released independently assessed resource figures for the FAN deepwater basin discovery offshore Senegal. RISC assigns 2C recoverable resources of 198mmbbls, based on data from the FAN-1 discovery well, drilled in 2014. Given that the well encountered thin reservoir sands of disappointing quality, the JV has since focused on appraising and developing the more attractive SNE field that sits nearby in shallower water on the shelf.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
13 December 2017

Kosmos exploration hiccups

Kosmos this week announced that its most recent exploration well offshore Mauritania, Lamantin-1, was water bearing.

The well is the second disappointment in a four well exploration campaign offshore Mauritania and Senegal designed to test the outboard basin floor fan fairway. Since its Tortue-1 discovery in 2015, the company had enjoyed a 100% success rate in the region, with 25 Tcf discovered across five wells.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
7 November 2017

Tullow’s Araku result completes our 2017 wells to watch list

At the start of this year, we highlighted seven exploration wells due to be drilled in 2017, all involving independent companies and targeting resources over 100mmboe. The results from the last of these wells, Tullow’s Araku, were announced last week, with the offshore Suriname well proving the presence of gas condensate but with no significant reservoir quality rocks.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
10 October 2017

Verbier delivers after sidetrack

Statoil’s sidetracked Verbier well has discovered oil after the main wellbore found water filled sand. The company was targeting oil in an updip location on the structure together with joint venture partner Jersey Oil & Gas (JOG). Statoil believes that the 20/05b-13z well has proven a minimum recoverable resource of 25mmbbls, and that the upside could be as much as 130mmbbls. The JV has not at this stage provided details of the discovery such as sand quality and thickness, or of the location of the sidetrack. Appraisal wells will now be planned to assess the commerciality of Verbier, and to mature further prospectivity in the P2170 licence including the Cortina prospect and Meribel lead.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
26 September 2017

Fatala well latest disappointment offshore West Africa

Results from Hyperdynamics’ Fatala-1 are the latest in a number of disappointing wells drilled offshore West Africa. It joins Ophir’s Ayame-1X well in Cote d’Ivoire and ExxonMobil’s Liberian well Mesurado-1 as highly anticipated exploration wells that have failed to deliver over the last year in an effort to extend the successes seen in Mauritania, Senegal and Ghana.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
12 September 2017

Drombeg adds to Druid disappointment

The Druid/Drombeg frontier exploration well, 53/6-1, is currently being plugged and abandoned after encountering porous water bearing reservoir across both target intervals. Operator Providence Resources announced the results from the deeper Drombeg target this week, following on from similarly disappointing results from Druid in August.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
29 August 2017

Korpfjell disappoints in the Barents

One of the most anticipated exploration wells of 2017, Korpfjell, has proven a small non-commercial gas volume in the frontier southeast region of the Barents Sea. The Statoil operated well had been targeting oil in a large structure that was estimated by partner Lundin to be over four times the size of that seen in the giant 1.9 - 3bnbbl Johan Sverdrup field.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
12 July 2017

Significant discovery for Premier offshore Mexico

Premier’s discovery in Zama-1, offshore Mexico, demonstrates why international companies have been lining up to secure positions in the region. The well encountered net oil bearing reservoir in the Upper Miocene that the company estimates contains over 1 bn bbls gross oil in place (while partner and operator Talos Energy gives a range of 1.4 to 2bnbbls).

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
4 July 2017

Sound focus on Morocco after Badile disappointment

Sound Energy will switch its focus to its ongoing activity in its Sidi Moktar licence onshore Western Morocco following the sub -commercial gas volume discovered at Badile.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
20 June 2017

South east basin most popular in latest Mexico round

Following on from our recent Offshore Mexico ‘Exploration Watch’ (Click here for report), bidding in Round 2.1 was concentrated on the south east basins and saw the first entry to the basin of supermajor Shell as well as UK independent Cairn Energy. Ten of the fifteen shallow water blocks on offer were awarded, with nine of these located in the Sureste Basin. Only one block, Block 2, was awarded (to Dea Deutsche and Pemex) in the five blocks on offer in the Tampico-Misantla and Veracruz basins.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
7 June 2017

Porcupine Basin attracts Total

Total is the latest major oil company to move into the Porcupine Basin offshore Ireland, a region that has been generating interest across the industry. It has entered into two separate agreements with Providence Resources and Sosina Exploration that will give it the option to farm into Frontier Exploration Licence FEL 2/14 as well as securing a 50% WI and operatorship of Licensing Option 16/27. FEL 2/14 is the location of the upcoming 53/6-A Druid/Drombeg well which is due to spud at the end of this month and was highlighted in our ‘Wells to watch 2017’ report. Click here for report  LO 16/27 is to the north of Druid/Drombeg and contains the Avalon prospect.Providence has also agreed an option to farm out a further 20% of LO 16/27 to Cairn.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
23 May 2017

Premier spuds Zama-1 offshore Mexico

The spudding of Zama-1 marks the first offshore exploration well to be drilled in Mexico by an international company in over 80 years. The Talos Energy operated well, partnered by Premier Oil and private Mexican company Sierra Oil and Gas was on our list of wells to watch in 2017. Click here for report.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
2 May 2017

Cairn/FAR return to deepwater FAN in Senegal

The next well to be drilled by the Cairn/FAR joint venture offshore Senegal will be the FAN South-1 exploration well, marking a shift away from the shelf and back into the basin where the first exploration well, FAN-1, was drilled in 2014.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
21 March 2017

Wells to watch in 2017

Since the oil price crash of 2014, exploration has been particularly badly hit as companies looked to trim expenditure. Wood Mackenzie estimates that 2017 exploration will account for 8% of upstream expenditure, down from historic norms of 14%. In this more difficult environment, any surviving exploration has tended to be led by majors, for example ExxonMobil’s giant Liza discovery offshore Guyana in 2015. In our most recent Exploration Watch, we highlight wells due to spud in 2017 that involve independent companies, with resources estimates greater than 100mmboe. Our exception is the much anticipated multi-billion barrel potential Korpfjell prospect in the Barents Sea offshore Norway, which is operated by Statoil and partnered by major companies.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
15 February 2017

Filicudi discovery - positive start to 2017 Barents exploration

Lundin’s Filicudi discovery is a successful start to exploration drilling in 2017 for the Barents Sea. The prospect holds an estimated 35 - 100mmboe and encountered 63m of oil and 66m of gas in high quality Jurassic and Triassic sandstones. Filicudi is on trend with Johan Castberg around 40km to the north east and the discovery has derisked the adjacent 218mmboe Hurri prospect together with the 285mmboe Hufsa. As a result, both prospects now carry a 25% CoS, and Lundin and licence partners AkerBP and Dea are considering drilling one or both of these later this year.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
18 January 2017

Norway awards 56 new licences

Norway has awarded 56 new production licences under the 2016 Norwegian APA (Awards in Pre-defined Areas) Licence Round, which covered the more explored areas of the Norwegian Continental Shelf . Interest was strongest in the North Sea area with 36 awards, while 17 were awarded in the Norwegian Sea. Only three awards went in the Barents Sea, reflecting the frontier nature of the basin. Link to awards maps

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
17 January 2017

2017 Senegal appraisal to kick off in January

Cairn Energy confirmed today that it will return to drilling offshore Senegal by the end of January this year, with two firm wells designed to further evaluate its 473mmbbl SNE discovery. The Stena DrillMax is contracted for these two appraisal wells together with multiple follow on options yet to be confirmed but which could include exploration wells in addition to further appraisal.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
28 September 2016

Mexico shale potential

Mexico’s Secretary of Energy, Pedro Joaquin Coldwell, indicated in a speech in Houston last week that the country’s first auction for its northern shale fields, delayed because of low oil prices, could now take place as early as Q2 2017.

According to an EIA assessment report carried out in 2013, Mexico holds technically recoverable resources of 545TCF of shale gas and 13.1blnbbls of shale oil and condensate. The bulk of this sits in the Eagle Ford Shale of the Burgos Basin which is estimated to contain 343TCF and 6.3bnbbls. Since the reservoir in Burgos is an extension of its commercially successful equivalent in South Texas there are hopes that the US fracking successes can be repeated here. In the basins to the south and east of Burgos the shale geology becomes more complex and shale development potential is less certain.

Read more...
Elaine Reynolds
27 September 2016

Barents Sea - frontier drilling in 2017

The Barents Sea to the north of Norway is estimated to contain almost half of the recoverable undiscovered resources remaining in the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS). At present only two fields, Statoil’s Snøhvit and Eni’s Goliat, are in production but a number of discoveries since 2011 have the potential to be stand-alone developments and are currently being appraised. The recent 23rd licensing round awarded acreage exclusively in the Barents and for the first time included the frontier South East Barents. Statoil has already indicated that it plans to drill the high-risk/high-reward Korpfjell prospect located in PL859 in this frontier area as part of a five to seven well Barents exploration programme in 2017.

Read more...
Will Forbes
18 July 2016

Conoco sells Senegalese discovery blocks - fair price?


Conoco’s sale of its interests in Senegal can be used as a barometer of industry sentiment and as a yardstick on valuation of the assets.

We believe the deal reached was a fair reflection of the value of the assets given the current environment, where the collapse in the oil price has lead to a re-evaluation within the industry. Conoco may have signalled its intent to sell the assets, but as a result this was an open process where all comers could have bid.

Read more...