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Namibia Records A Second Duster in Weeks

Chariot Oil and Gas , a London listed minnow, announced the deployment of the Ocean Rig Poseidon to spud the Prospect S well in the Central Blocks licence offshore Namibia, less than a week after Tullow Oil  went to town with the results of Cormorant-1 as a dry hole.

12 days later, the probe was announced a duster.
The well had been safely drilled to a total measured depth (MD) of 4,165 m to test the stacked targets in Prospect S. It penetrated the anticipated turbidite reservoir sands, in line with the pre-drill prognosis, however the reservoirs were water-bearing. “The data collected will be used to calibrate the existing data sets to understand the implications of the well results on the prospectivity of the surrounding area.”
The operator was in the process of plugging and abandoning the well as we went to press in early October 2018.

The structure on which the Prospect S was drilled is one of five dip-closed structural traps, totalling 1,758MMBbls gross mean prospective resources, which have been identified in the Upper Cretaceous turbidite clastic play fairway. The company had talked of a probability of geologic success of 29%, citing a Competent Persons Report by Netherland Sewell Associated Inc.

“A further two higher risk-reward, stratigraphic traps, totalling 885MMBbls gross mean prospective resources”,  was to have been de-risked through the calibration of the 6,100km2 of proprietary 3D seismic data on the Central Blocks with the result of the Prospect S well. All that did not happen.

Chariot operates the Central Blocks with 65%. Partners include Azinam 20%, NAMCOR 10% and Ignitus 5%.


For Ororo 2, Sirius Will Take Adriatic 1, from Amni

After waiting for over four months on COSL Force rig, Sirius Petroleum has moved on to an alternative for its two well drilling campaign on the Ororo field in shallow water Oil Mining Lease (OML) 95 offshore North western Niger Delta of Nigeria.

The company now says it would utilise the Adriatic I jack up, operated by Shelf Drilling, and currently on duty on Amni Petroleum’s Okoro field in south eastern offshore Niger Delta. Sirius says it has decided, by mutual agreement with China Oilfield Services Limited (COSL), “to abrogate its agreement with the latter for the supply of a jack-up rig for the drilling programme on the Ororo field.

COSL Force rig was expected to have mobilized on its way to Nigeria, since June 2018 at the latest The Ororo field is held by Guarantee Petroleum and Owena Oil &Gas, to whom Sirius is a Financing and Technical Partner. But in early June 2018, Sirius reported that COSL Force Jack up rig had commenced critical equipment re-certification programme which it had to do “before it could be released to its next contract” That re-certification process has taken all the last four months.

Sirius’ agreement with Shelf Drilling Limited is to supply its Adriatic I jack-up rig “which is scheduled to become available during November 2018”.  Sirius’ statement indicates that the rig is concluding a well campaign with Amni, which is “utilising Schlumberger services and equipment on board the Adriatic I, and meets the specifications required for the Company’s proposed drilling programme at Ororo-2 and Ororo-3”.  Sirius says that its  Company’s operational budget for the Ororo drilling programme as disclosed in the Company’s admission document published on 30 November 2017 remains unchanged.

This means that the four month delay in waiting for the COSL jack up rig has not caused any financial harm. The company doesn’t say anything of the fact that part of the deal with COSL was that the drilling company would be part vendor financing the drilling. It says of Adriatic 1: “The proposed rig is fully certified, currently previously announced, the Company and its operational partners, Schlumberger and Add Energy intend to achieve the spudding of Ororo-2 at the earliest possible time during Q4 2018.”


Will Sirius Petroleum Spud Ororo-2 Before Year End?

Sirius Petroleum has admitted, publicly, that the rig it announced would drill its first well on a Nigerian marginal field, has taken too long to arrive.

COSL Force rig was expected to have mobilized on its way to Nigeria, since June 2018 at the latest. The China Oilfield Services Limited (COSL) operated jack-up is meant to drill Ororo-2 on the Ororo field  in shallow water Oil Mining Lease (OML) 95.

That asset is held by Guarantee Petroleum and Owena Oil &Gas, to whom Sirius is a Financing and Technical Partner. But in early June 2018, Sirius reported that COSL Force Jack up rig had commenced critical equipment re-certification programme which it had to do “before it could be released to its next contract”. Since that early June announcement, Sirius had not published any update on Ororo, until September 27, 2018, when it declared that it was currently waiting to conclude this process (of deploying a rig to site) which “has taken significantly longer than originally envisaged”. Sirius then said it was “at an advanced stage of concluding its rig requirements in order to achieve the spud of Ororo 2 in Q4 2018”, a very ambiguous statement.

Sirius first mentioned it had a partial vendor financing deal with COSL in a late 2017 presentation, where it reported an Initial Ororo-2 well programme, delivering initial production of 2,700BOPD in HI 2018. “Sirius has the option to extend the well campaign to drill additional wells under the commercial arrangements with the service providers”, it had promised.


Aker Makes Hay With Ghanaian Asset

Aker Energy, who purchased Hess Corp’s Ghana interest less than nine months ago, has set to work on the acreage, signing a rig contract and looking to drill in the next month and half.

The Maersk Drilling operated ultra deepwater drillship Maersk Viking will spud the Pecan-4A appraisal well offshore Ghana latest November 2018. Aker’s contract with Maersk covers one firm well with an expected duration of between 30 and 35 days, with options for additional wells.

The location of the probe is in an ultra deepwater depth of 2,674metres in the Deepwater Tano Cape Three Points (DWT/CTP) block. The main objective of the well will be to test the extension of the Pecan Field. This will give valuable and important input when optimizing the plan of development for the field and in understanding the wider appraisal potential of the block”.

Aker Energy operates the DWT/CTP block with a 50% participating interest, LUKOIL (38%), Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (10%) and Fueltrade (2%).


The Namibian Rush Hits A Bump

The first of the two wells scheduled to set off another round of drilling in Namibia, has come up as a duster.

Tullow Oil operated Cormorant-1 exploration well on Petroleum Exploration License 37 (“PEL 37”) offshore the Republic of Namibia encountered non-commercial hydrocarbons. PEL 37 covers 17,295 square kilometers in the Walvis Basin, approximately 420 kilometers south of the Angolan-Namibian border. The Cormorant-1 well, located in 548 meters of water, was drilled by the Ocean Rig Poseidon drillship to a total depth of 3,855 meters. The well has been plugged and abandoned.

The Cormorant-1 exploration well penetrated a 50-metre fan system within the Cormorant Prospect. Interbedded sandstones were encountered in the primary objective of the Cormorant-1 well but proved to be water bearing. Wet gas signatures, indicative of oil, were encountered in the overlying shale section. Important geological data has been gained from this well, and, in combination with high quality 3D seismic data, will provide valuable insights into the future prospectivity of PEL 37 where several additional prospects with significant resource potential have been mapped.

Jan Maier, VP Exploration for Africa Energy, a minority partner with 10% stake in the project, says that his company is encouraged that the probe “confirmed the existence of a mid-Cretaceous aged deep marine fan sandstone system with further potential in the play.

Africa Energy owns one-third of Pancontinental Namibia (Pty) Ltd, which holds a 30% participating interest in PEL 37, resulting in a 10% effective interest for the Company. PEL 37 is operated by Tullow Namibia Ltd, which holds 35%, with partners ONGC Videsh Ltd. and Paragon Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd, holding 30% and 5%, respectively.


BWOffshore Finds More Oil, Upside of the Main Dussafu Accumulation

Norwegian operator BWOffshore has made an oil discovery in the Ruche North East Marin-1 (DRNEM-1) well, drilled in the Dussafu Marin PSC, offshore Gabon.

The Dussafu Marin PSC is undergoing a field development, with first oil expected by October 2018. Two development wells have been drilled, which will deliver crude oil to an FPSO that has arrived in the Gabonese waters. But the DRNEM-1 well is an exploration component of the ongoing activity, not to be confused with the field development.

The DRNEM-1 well was drilled to identify additional oil resources in the pre-salt Gamba and Dentale Formations in the greater Ruche area, and completed within budget. These resources may be developed together in the future with the existing Ruche field discoveries, located 3km to the south west.

Panoro Energy made those discoveries made in 2011, but BWOffshore is the current operator, and it is footing most of the bill, with Panoro being a minority partner.

DRNEM-1 was drilled with the Borr Norve jackup unit in 115 metres water depth, reaching a vertical depth of 3,400 metres within the Dentale Formation. Log evaluation, pressure data and fluid samples indicate that approximately 15 metres of good quality oil pay was encountered in the Gamba Formation and 25 metres of oil pay in stacked reservoirs within the Dentale Formation. Additional technical evaluation in currently being undertaken to appraise this discovery.

The forward plan includes a sidetrack which will appraise the Dentale sands in an updip location and the lateral extent of the Gamba reservoir.

Meanwhile, the FPSO, named Adolo, is now connected to the mooring system. First oil is estimated for approximately late September or early October, 2018.


Tullow Spuds Namibia’s First Well In Five Years

By Toyin Akinosho, in Abidjan

British explorer leads the return to Southwestern Africa

Tullow Oil has spud  the Cormorant-1 well on Petroleum Exploration License 37 (PEL 37) in the Walvis Basin offshore the Republic of Namibia.

The well is located in 545 metres of water and is expected to be drilled by the Ocean Rig Poseidon drillship to a total depth of 3,830 metres subsea.  Cormorant-1 will test the oil potential in a mid-Cretaceous aged deep marine fan sandstone system. Drilling and evaluation of the well is expected to take approximately 34 days.

PEL 37 covers 17,295 square kilometres and is located approximately 420 kilometres south of the Angolan-Namibian border.

Cormorant-1 is the first well to be drilled in Namibia in the current post –low price era and is also the first probe since Wingat-1 and Murombe-1 (both drilled in 2013) in PEL 23, located directly south of PEL 37 “confirmed” the presence of mature, oil-prone source rock in the Walvis Basin. It is thus the first well to test the validity of the industry-wide claims about Wingat and Murombe.

The Cormorant Prospect was defined utilizing a high-quality 3D seismic survey acquired in 2014 and is one of four similar submarine fan prospects on PEL 37. The Cormorant Prospect has gross best estimate prospective resources of 124Million barrels and, if successful, is expected to open a fairway of similar dependent fans with substantial resource potential across PEL 37, according to geoscientists at African Energy, a minority partner in PEL 37.

Tullow operates Cormorant-1 with 35%, with partners African Energy (10%), as well as ONGC Videsh Ltd. and Paragon Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd, holding 30% and 5%, respectively.


With Well 9, Opuama Shoots To 25,000

Increased water cut at Op 7 Warns of a Looming Challenge

The Opuama field is currently producing at approximately 25,000 BOPD (Barrels of Oil Per Day) (11,250 net to Elcrest).

It is “an all-time record for OML 40”, says Eland Oil and Gas, the technical arm of the IJV Elcrest, which has a joint venture with the Nigerian state owned NODC on the asset.

“This (output) includes both strings of production from Opuama-9 which has just been brought onstream at higher levels than anticipated”, says George Maxwell, CEO Eland.

Eland says it has experienced an increased water-cut from Opuama-7 “and hence we are taking remedial action to rectify this. A re-entry of Opuama-7 is expected to take place during the coming month”.

That problem is the major production challenge onshore Niger Delta, especially in fields that require natural water drive from down dip of the producing reservoirs, to deliver.

Eland thinks that the problem is a no brainer.

“Production is still expected to be in excess of 30,000BOPD (13,500BOPD net to Elcrest) from Opuama upon completion of the Opuama-10 well”.

ENI Claims 300Million Barrels in New Angolan Discovery

Opens up the southern part of 15/06, operator says

By Sully Manope, in Luanda

Italian explorer ENI has announced a new oil discovery in Block 15/06, in the Kalimba exploration prospect, in Angola’s deep offshore. “The new discovery is estimated to contain between 230 and 300 Million barrels of light oil in place”, the company declares.

The Kalimba-1 NFW well, which has led to the discovery, is located at approximately 150 kilometers off the coast and 50 kilometers South East from the Armada Olombendo FPSO (East Hub). The well was drilled by the West Gemini drillship in a water depth of 458 meters and reached a total depth of 1901 meters.

“Kalimba-1 NFW proved a 23 meters net oil pay of high quality oil (33° API) contained in Upper Miocene sandstones with excellent petrophysical properties. The data acquired in Kalimba-1 NFW indicate a production capacity in excess of 5,000 barrels of oil per day”, ENI remarks.

The company says that the discovery opens new opportunities for oil exploration in the Southern part of Block 15/06, so far considered mainly gas prone, thus creating new chances for additional potential value in the block.

“The Joint Venture, composed by ENI (operator, 36.8421%), Sonangol P&P (36.8421%) and SSI Fifteen Limited (26.3158%), will work to appraise the updip of the discovery and will start the studies to fast track its development”.

ENI currently outputs an equity production of about 155,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in Angola.

“In Block 15/06 the two oil development projects, West hub and East Hub, are currently producing about 150.000 barrels of oil per day (100%).  ENI is also operator of Cabinda Norte Block, located onshore Angola.

The next start-ups in block 15/06 this year will be the Upper Miocene, in the East Hub, and the Subsea Boosting System for the Mpungi field, while the Vandumbu field, that will be connected to the West Hub, will start production at the end of 2018, ahead of plan. These start-ups will add further 30,000 barrels of oil to the overall production from Block 15/06, which in 2019 will exceed 170,000 BOPD gross”.

Angola Drops One More Rig

By Toyin Akinosho

Angola’s rig activity has shrivelled even more, with Seadrill’s West Eclipse, which was drilling
for ExxonMobil on Block 15, completing its two year contract in June 2018 and leaving the

The number of rigs active in the country will thus drop to four rigs, drilling in the same
number of locations.

ExxonMobil is still an active driller though, working with two Deutag rigs.
TOTAL, the French major, is also active with the drill bit.

Angolan and Nigerian rig activity have been on a headlong crash since 2015. But while
Nigeria is on the rebound, Angola seems headed for the floor.

For updates on rig activity in both Nigeria and Angola as well as vessel count in Nigeria’s
offshore acreages, please click here.

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