All articles in the Oil patch Sub-Sahara Section:


Conoil Breaks the Cretaceous Code in the Niger Delta

By Toyin Akinosho

The Nigerian junior, Conoil Producing, has encountered “possibly commercial sized” hydrocarbon footage in a cretaceous sequence in the Toju Ejanla-1 in Oil Mining Lease(OML) 103 in the western flank of the Niger Delta.

The well was drilled in a corner of the lease that is the boundary between the Niger Delta and the Benin Basin.

The company is using the Adriatic-1, a jack up rig operated by Shelf Drilling.

Discoveries have been made in two reservoirs but details are still sketchy as testing/sampling is still ongoing to know the extent of their materiality.

Conoil is not in a hurry to drill either an appraisal well or other prospects that are on trend with the Toju Ejanla structure, but would rather integrate the data into ongoing studies.

It is unusual to find hydrocarbon in the Cretaceous sequence of the Niger Delta, which is a tertiary basin. The North western flank of the Niger Delta, in which OML 103 is domiciled, is close to the boundary of the Benin Basin, whose sedimentary deposits are located in the cretaceous, an older geological sequence. Which begs the question as to whether this “discovery” is in the Benin Basin, or in the Niger Delta. Either way, if it is announced to be commercial, it would be a significant find.


GABON: BWOffshore Runs With The Dussafu Plan

By Toyin Akinosho

With proved reserves of 16MMBO, field is unlikely to deliver more than 6,000BOPD

BWOffshore spud the first of the two producer wells in the final lap to first oil in the Dussafu Acreage offshore South Gabon.

The Norwegian operator is angling for first oil from the field in the second half of 2018.

The DTM-2H production probe, on the Tortue oil field, in 116metre water depth, part of the Dussafu Marin Production Sharing Contract, is being drilled with the Borr Norve jack-up rig.

The Tortue field contains oil reserves in two main sandstone reservoirs – the Gamba and the Dentale D6.

DTM-2H is a horizontal well targeting the Dentale D6 reservoir at 3,140 metre true vertical depth (TVD) subsea. Following drilling, the well is intended to be completed as a gas lifted, subsea oil production well with an approximate 500 metre horizontal drain. The drilling and completion for DTM-2H is expected to take approximately 70 days. Following the drilling of the DTM-2H well the rig will move first to drill the DTM-3 pilot hole in order to appraise the northwest of the Tortue field in both the Gamba and Dentale reservoirs. Subsequently, the rig will drill the DTM 3-H production well targeting the Gamba reservoir at Tortue. The two production wells will be tied back to a leased floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel via subsea trees and flowlines.

The partners have not shared the likely production rates after the wells have been hooked up, but with proved reserves being 15.9Million barrels of oil, certified by NSAI, an industry authority on reserves calculation, the optimum outut should be around 6,000Barrels of oil per day.


Preowei-3 Tops Up The Volume in TOTAL’s Deepwater Reservoirs

A third field can now be developed in OML 130, after Akpo and Egina

TOTAL has discovered new oil in its operated Oil Mining Lease (OML) 130 in deepwater Nigeria.
The evaluation of the results of the Preowei-3 well, concluded in late November 2017, indicate an addition of approximately 80 to 100 Million barrels of oil (MMbo) to the full field contingent recoverable resources, bringing them to 140 to 200MMbo.

Preowei is the third producible oil accumulation in OML 130, which hosts the giants Akpo (in production since 2009) and Egina (with expected first oil in late 2018).

The Preowei-3 well, drilled to a final depth of 3,235 meters, encountered approximately 50 metres net of high-quality oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs, in line with expectations. The well confirms previous results from the Preowei-1B and Preowei-2 wells, which encountered approximately 55 metres of oil-bearing sandstone reservoir.

This result means that Preowei can be developed as a field, and deliver around 40-50,000barrels of oil a day (BOPD). “We are encouraged by the results of this well which confirm the commercial viability of this
deep offshore discovery.

TOTAL is now progressing discussions with our partners and the authorities regarding the development of this resource,” said Arnaud Breuillac, President Exploration & Production at TOTAL.

TOTAL Upstream Nigeria Limited operates OML 130 with a 24% interest, in partnership with
Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), South Atlantic Petroleum (SAPETRO),
CNOOC Limited and Petrobras.


CBGS’ Party, China’s Celebration

The world’s ‘largest geophysical company’s ets on its 20th Year of Winning in Africa’s E&P

It was a party called by a Nigerian service contractor, which turned out to be largely a celebration of China’s twenty years in African hydrocarbon exploration and production.

The world’s second largest economy first arrived in the African oil industry in the mid- nineties as a contractor. The Bureau of Geophysics (BGP), a subsidiary of China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), won a seismic acquisition contract from Shell in 1998.

The Anglo Dutch giant was reluctant, but Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation NNPC, the country’s state hydrocarbon company, insisted on opening up the competition to non-western service companies.

BGP fumbled in its first shoots, but the evidence in hand today suggests that it was all a matter of teething. The company went ahead to win a Shell award after that project, successfully executed more contracts and at some point, started squeezing the older, more established geophysical companies from the Western hemisphere out of the market with its low bid prices.

The gentlemen who addressed the investment forum organised by CBGS- a Nigerian seismic processing company- last Tuesday, looked many times more dapper and flashier than the Chinese men in crumpled suits who showed up on the second floor of Chevron Nigeria headquarters in 1997, proposing to acquire and process seismic data for the American company; one of the many solicitation visits marking BGP’s arrival on the continent.

Indeed, the spokes persons at the forum were Western gentlemen, while the Chinese stayed in the background.Their names are withheld because “BGP doesn’t want press coverage”.

By 2003, BGP had become the largest land acquisition company in the world, the forum heard. “In 2015, we became the world’s largest seismic service provider”, the lead presenter noted, with a follow up remark: “Everyone thinks that CGG is still the biggest seismic service provider, but we are”.

He didn’t exactly provide the financial data, nor the company capitalisation to support the claim, preferring, essentially, to lay out the head count and company infrastructure: BGP has 22,000 employees, 115 land crews, six streamer vessels and 10 shallow water Ocean Bottom Node (OBN) vessels.

BGP Marine, a recently formed arm of the company (founded in 2006), had carried out 120 marine projects. The purpose of the forum, indeed, was to show the company’s capacity for acquiring Ocean Bottom Node seismic, especially for high grading existing oil field production projects in shallow water terrain.

CBGS is the Nigerian Local Partner for BGP Marine. “Our objective is to build local capacity and knowledge in Ocean Bottom Seismic (OBS), technology in Nigeria”, says Bank Anthony Okoroafaor, CBGS Chief Executive.“My first step is this Technology forum and training of about 40 persons on OBS on first phase”.


CGG Contracted To Acquire Vast Carpet of 3D Seismic Data off Mozambique

Mozambican authorities have selected CGG, the world’s top geophysical company, to acquire new multi-client three dimensional (3D) seismic data on two blocks and their surrounds.

Following a competitive tender process held by Instituto Nacional de Petroleo (INP), the country’s regulatory authorities, in 2016,the government signed an agreement with CGGto commence acquisition of up to 40,000 km2of 3D data over the Beira High in the Zambezi Delta, (offshore) covering blocks Z5-C and Z5-D and surrounding open acreage.

Deliverables will include fast-track PreSTM, Final PreSTM and PreSDM. The seismic data will be imaged with the latest 3D broadband deghosting and advanced demultiple, velocity modeling and imaging techniques, including Full-Waveform Inversion.

This survey will form part of a comprehensive, fully integrated JumpStart™ geoscience program that will deliver a better overall understanding of the prospectivity of the region. Marine gravity and magnetic data will be acquired simultaneously with the seismic to accelerate regional interpretation.

Jean-Georges Malcor, CEO, CGG, said: “This agreement marks the beginning of a fruitful partnership with the INP to promote the potential of the Zambezi basin and other regions of Mozambique. Our advanced 3D seismic and integrated geoscience program will enable oil companies to confidently de-risk this exciting new exploration area and accelerate development of the country’s resources.”


Chevron Has Drilled 22 of 36 Wells In The $1.2Billion Deal

Chevron Nigeria has concluded slightly less than two thirds of the drilling funded by a consortium of Nigerian and international lenders, led by Standard Chartered Bank and UBA.

The $1.2Billion transaction, signed in September 2015, was projected to fund 36 wells with a projected peak incremental production of 41, 000 barrels of crude oil per day and 127Million standard cubic feet of gas per day (MMscf/d) “in the years ahead”, according to a statement by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), the senior partner in the NNPC/Chevron JV, of which Chevron is the operator.

16 of the 22 wells drilled so far are in the swamp, in the Gbokoda field in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 49 and were drilled by the rig OES Respect. The remaining six wells, drilled in shallow water, were drilled by Shelf Drilling’s Trident 8, on the Okan field, in OML 90.

It is not clear how much of the incremental production has been achieved by the activity. “The package is projected to generate between $2 and $5Billion of incremental revenues to the Nigerian government over the life of the project, subject to prevailing oil price in the upcoming years”, the NNPC statement had said.


Kenya: Three Wells Most Likely for the rest of 2017

By Sa’ad Bashir, East African Correspondent, in Dar es Salaam

It’s not clear if other companies, apart from Tullow and partners, will drill any more wells in Kenya in 2017. But Tullow and its JV partners have confirmed that three wells are planned. Drilling is underway in one of them, to test an undrilled fault block adjacent to the Ekales field.

The Ngamia-11 appraisal well will be drilled and completed for use in an extended water flood pilot test in conjunction with the Early Oil Pilot Scheme (EOPS) and the Etete exploration well is planned to test a prospect adjacent to the Greater Etom structure.

Tullow says that further locations are currently under evaluation to be added to the programme.

Water injection testing on the Amosing and Ngamia fields has been successfully demonstrated and underpins the feasibility of water injection for the development of these fields.

Africa Oil Corp. has a 25% working interest in Blocks 10BB and 13T with Tullow Oil plc (50% and Operator) and Maersk Olieog Gas A/S (25%) holding the remaining interests.


Ghana Expects a Surge in Rig Activity from early 2018

Ghana’s leading E&P operators hope be busier with the drill bit between late 2017 and mid 2018 than they currently are. Rig activity will be at their peak by 1Q 2018.

Activities at three oilfield developments will be responsible for the increase in rig count.

Ghana’s crude oil production averaged 132,000BOPD in Q12017 and has moved higher in 2Q 2017.

Full story here


OES Teamwork Rig Will Drill Opuama 7 Sidetrack

By McJohnTatsi, in Warri

The NPDC/Elcrest joint venture has awarded OES Energy Services Limited the contract to drill a sidetrack well to Opuama-7. The drilling contractor will utilise its OES Teamwork swamp rig for the work.

The side-tracking of the existing Opuama-7 well is expected to contribute an initial production rates of 5,900* barrels of oil per day (“BOPD”) gross, increasing near term overall production from OML 40 to around an expected 17,500 BOPD gross, says Eland Oil and Gas, the UK listed technical partner in the Eland-Starcrest IJV (otherwise known as Elcrest).

OES Teamwork swamp rig is currently undergoing meticulous preparation, which includes mobilising rig personnel, system tests and equipment shake down, to target the commencement of the rig move to Opuama-7 location in July 2017”, the company explains.

Duration
The rig will drill a sidetrack to around 2,300metres (7,500feet), expected to take in the region of a month to complete.

Extension Possible
As part of the contract’s terms, the NPDC/Elcrest Joint Venture has the option to extend the contract for the re-entry of Gbetiokun-1, which it intends to start immediately after Opuama-7 sidetrack.


Ophir Drills the Seventh Duster in Short Order

By Toyin Akinosho, Publisher

With the Ayame-1X exploration well in Cote D’Ivoire’s Block 513 announced as a dry hole, Ophir Energy, the London listed explorer, has concluded the seventh dry hole in Subsaharan Africa in the space of three years.

Of this number, six of those dusters were drilled in one year; 2014.

Ophir had not drilled any new field wildcat well in Africa since it plugged and abandoned the Mkuki-1 well offshore Tanzania in November 2014.

Ophir drilled three dry holes in Gabon and three dry holes in Tanzania in 2014 and then stopped drilling new field wildcats as an operator on the continent altogether.

But as a non- operating partner, Ophir has been involved in successful wildcats in the same time frame, notably with BG as operator, offshore Tanzania.

It has also been lucky in Equatorial Guinea, where it is developing a gas field.
But its record for drilling dry holes in the subcontinent is unparalleled by any other independent.

A fuller story of the company’s long dry season, complete with details of the wells drilled, is published here.

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