Uganda is experiencing its most intense drilling campaign since commercial oil was discovered six years ago, according to the country’s Chamber of Mines and Petroleum.
The major activity are in both blocks 1 and 2, the areas operated by France’s TOTAL and the Irish firm Tullow, the Chamber’s journal reported. Five rigs have been deployed on several locations in the country in 2012, the highest number in a year ever.
Appraisal drilling and well testing activities in the Kigogole, Nsoga, Ngege, Ngara area commenced in 2012. This is the precursor to field development.
Tullow says the Ngege-3, 4, 5 and 6 wells were completed and the Ngege-7 appraisal well is expected to be completed shortly. The journal reported that Tullow learnt some lessons along the way, and made significant progress. “The successful Ngege-6 well was the first slant well drilled in Uganda and provided valuable experience for future production drilling. The Ngege appraisal wells have all encountered hydrocarbons and enabled improved delineation of this field which covers an area of approximately 50 sq km,” the journal quoted the company as saying.
In Block 1, operated by TOTAL, already three wells have already been drilled on the Jobi-Rii field, the flow testing of Ngiri-2 at rates up to 1,200 barrels of oil per day and the drilling of the first of five wells on the Ngiri field. Waiting to be drilled are more than 20 appraisal wells, extensive well- testing and 3D seismic acquisition on the Mpyo, Gunya, and the Jobi-East discoveries over the course of 2012 and 2013.
TOTAL also intends to drill the Omuka and Raa prospects which will be the first wells drilled to the west of the Nile.
CNOOC also drilled a well in the Kanywataba prospect in May, although the well was water bearing, which loosely translated, is called a dry well with no oil.
The license to the Kanywataba prospect is up for expiry in August, although the Chinese oil major still holds the production license for the giant Kingfisher well.
The massive assembling of oil rigs — where drilling a well will usually costs an oil company an average of $60,000 is a clear indication of how fast the companies want to drive the country to the oil production status as soon as possible.
Source: Tullow and Uganda Chamber of Mines and Petroleum Journal