Ophir has exited its position in the Marine IX block in Congo Brazzaville. The Australian minnow has also agreed heads of terms for a deepwater drillship for its operated multi-well West African drilling programme in 2014.
The exit from Congo Brazzaville is part of a broad Portfolio rationalization which includes leaving the Democratic Republic Of Congo (Congo Kinshasa) and Uganda, as well as reduction of stake in Somaliland. In Madagascar, Ophir had informed the Government of its intentions to relinquish operatorship and its interest in the Marovoay Block (2012).
The company is however upbeat about its West African assets. “A total of six firm plus additional contingent slots (for drilling) have been agreed”, Ophir says in a press release. “The programme is scheduled to commence in Gabon in early February 2014 with drilling of the (about). One billion barrel pre-salt Padouck Deep prospect on the Ntsina Block. The second well is expected to target the Affanga Deep prospect on the Gnondo Block with the third well likely to be the pre-salt Okala prospect on the Mbeli Block. Further details of the later drilling sequence and rig details will be provided in due course”.