On a per capita basis, Nigerian marginal field operators are more enthusiastic about drilling new wells or re-entering old ones than their bigger counterparts onshore. Civil works have commenced on Pillar Oil’s Amangba 1 well, formerly known as Umuseti East. Platform Petroleum is on a three well campaign with the Chinese rig HPEB 187,on its Egbeoma field in northwestern Niger Delta. One of the wells is entirely new and is drilled for a new take point.
The second is a sidetrack of an existing well, aiming for a more efficient drainage of the same reservoir down dip. The third well is a workover. Platform was following on the heels of Waltersmith and Niger Delta Petroleum, who were active with the drill bit on several wells back to back on Ibigwe and Ogbele fields respectively, for much of 2015. Midwestern Oil, operator of Umusadege field, has kept drilling new wells for more take points on the field for over a year.
Lekoil, Chorus Energy and Eurafric have also been working on wells in Otakikpo, Igbolo and Dawes Island fields respectively.
On the contrary, big oil has been quite inattentive to drilling onshore and shallow water. Shell has wrapped up drilling on the Kolo Creek and is winding down on two other campaigns. So it will be on just one rig by February 2016, from four in August 2015. Other majors, including Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Agip are drilling neither onshore nor shallow water.
Everyone, it seems, is wondering when Chevron will start drilling the first of the 36 wells funded by the widely publicized $1.2Billion loan from a consortium of banks led by Standard Chartered. TOTAL, however, has moved on to one shallow water location.The Nigerian January 2016 Rig Count is accessible to our premium paid up subscribers.