All articles in the Oil patch Sub-Sahara Section:

ENI Pushes its Ivory Coast ‘Oil in Place’ to 2.5Billion Barrels, with Baleine East Discovery

A new discovery offshore Cote d’Ivoire has sharply increased ENI’s oil and gas volumes in place to 2.5Billion Barrels of oil and 3.3Trillion cubic feet (TCF) of associated gas, the company has reported.

Baleine East 1X well, the second find on the Baleine structure, “confirmed the presence of a continuous oil column of about 48metres in reservoir rocks with good properties”, the Italian explorer says in a release. “From the vertical borehole a horizontal drain of 850 metres in length was subsequently drilled into the reservoir to perform a production test that confirmed a potential of potential of at least 12,000barrels of oil per day (12,000BOPD )and 14Million standard cubic feet per day (12 MMscf/d) of associated gas of production”.

The Baleine-1, located in block CI-101 in Côte d’Ivoire, was announced a discovery in September 2021. ENI took an early decision to develop the field and deliver first oil by 2023. Baleine East 1X is located in a water depth of about 1,150 metres, and five kilometres km east of the Baleine 1X, in an adjacent block CI-802. The result has simply extended the Baleine field eastwards.

ENI operates the two blocks with 90% operatorship. The state hydrocarbon company Petroci is a 10% partner.  ENI holds interests in five other blocks in the country’s deepwater, including CI-205, CI-501, CI-504, CI-401 and CI-801, all with the same partner Petroci Holding.

ENI says that its ongoing Baleine Field drilling campaign will continue with the spud of “a third well which will ensure, together with the other two already drilled, the accelerated start-up of production, confirming first oil in the first half of 2023”.

Baleine East 1X well was drilled with the Saipem 12000 drillship. The well reached its final depth of 3,165 metres measured depth.


Mozambique Inks Agreement for Multi-Client Seismic Data in Under-explored Basin

Mozambique’s National Petroleum Institute has signed an exclusive agreement with London-based Geopartners to perform a new multiclient, three dimensional (3D) seismic survey over the country’s offshore Angoche Basin.

“The project will comprise acquisition of a minimum 12,000 sq. km of 3D Multi-Client data over Blocks that will be awarded following the closure of the current 6th Licensing Round,” Geopartners says in a release.  “We are honoured to have concluded this new Agreement with INP to acquire this very large 3D seismic survey in the relatively underexplored but highly prospective Angoche Basin”.

The geophysical company says it will apply acquisition and imaging techniques to improve illumination of complex structures to help reduce exploration risk and support potential fast-track production and development. “Pre-acquisition permitting is underway, with the six-month survey due to start early next year”, the release explains. “Early processed results should be issued by year-end 2023”.

Sixteen new licence areas, distributed over four offshore basins are on offer for Mozambique’s ongoing 6th Licencing Round.  The INP has made available 2D and 3D seismic datasets for multi-client licensing, covering 22,700 sq. km of 3D seismic, 41,900 km of offshore 2D seismic and 18,700 km of onshore 2D seismic in the Rovuma, Angoche and Zambezi basins. Geopartners says it is the data release agent for these surveys.



PGS Wins “a Number of 4D Seismic Gigs” off West Africa

Norwegian geophysical company PGS says it has been awarded “a significant acquisition contract, consisting of several four-dimensional (4D) seismic surveys, by an international oil company offshore West Africa.

Acquisition is scheduled to start early November 2022 and expected to complete early May 2023.

The contract effectively secures work for the company’s flagship acquisition vessel, Ramform Vanguard until next summer season.

“Combining the Ramform acquisition platform and our GeoStreamer technology will provide the client with high quality 4D data,” says President & CEO in PGS, Rune Olav Pedersen.


Namibia: First Seismically Defined Well, About to Spud, in Kavango Basin

Canadian junior ReconAfrica is about to drill its first seismically defined hydrocarbon well in the Permian aged Kavango Basin onshore Namibia.

The 8-2 well is the first of an initial four well drilling programme, which will test two of the Basin’s three play types; oil prone Karoo Rift Fill and Intra Rift Fault Block plays, determined by interpretation of parts of the 1,211 kilometres of two dimensional (2D) seismic data acquired within the company’s over 34,000 square kilometre licensed area.

Jarvie-1, the company owned 1000 HP drilling rig “is now on the first drilling location (8-2) rigging up and scheduled to spud on or before June 25, 2022”, ReconAfrica says in a release.

ReconAfrica has just completed the second phase of its 2D seismic acquisition (761 km) with plans for the next phase of 2D seismic acquisition, which is anticipated to comprise in excess of 1,000 kilometres of 2-D seismic, making 2,211 kilometres of 2D seismic altogether. This (second phase) will be an extensive programme and subject to permitting, the Company anticipates on the ground acquisition to begin the fall of 2022.

8-2 will be drilled to a planned depth of approximately 2,800 metres (9,184 feet) and is designed to test potential conventional oil and associated natural gas reservoirs in clastic rocks (sandstones) in the Karoo Rift Fill, the Company’s primary play. The well will also be drilled deeper into the Pre-Karoo Mulden and Otavi formations. These intervals correspond to zones in the Company’s first well, the 6-2, (a non-seismically defined stratigraphic test) which is approximately 6.5 kilometres to the East, that had good oil and gas shows. It is anticipated the well will reach total depth within 60 days from the initial spud. Netherland, Sewell & Associates, Inc. (“NSAI”), the Company’s independent qualified reserves evaluator, has estimated an unrisked gross 799Million barrels of original oil in place (OOIP) for the well 8-2. The estimated unrisked gross prospective resource, (P50 case) with a projected 17% primary recovery, is 138Million barrels of oil for this well. Prospective resources are the arithmetic sum of multiple probability distributions.


“These estimates are based on un-risked prospective resources that have not been risked for chance of discovery and chance of development. If a discovery is made, there is no certainty that it will be developed or, if it is developed, there is no certainty as to the timing of such development”, ReconAfrica cautions. “There is no certainty that any portion of the resources will be discovered. If discovered, there is no certainty that it will be commercially viable to produce any portion of the resources. Prospective Resources are those quantities of petroleum estimated, as of a given date, to be potentially recoverable from undiscovered accumulations by applying future development projects”.


“We’re Not in a Hurry to Call Namibia a Big Discovery”-TOTALEnergies

Patrick Pouyanne, TOTALEnergies’ CEO, says he is pleased that the company’s exploration team is successful with the wildcat well drilled in the Orange basin off Namibia. But, he stresses, it’s a promising discovery.

“I say promising because it’s only one well. I’ve seen incredible numbers of newspapers”, he told a group of investment analysts and bankers after the announcement of the company’s First Quarter 2022 results.

“We need to do the appraisal. We’ve decided to accelerate the appraisal well August, September and to test. And then we will be able to communicate larger”, Pouyanne said in English. “But if we are able to generate by ourselves all these oil discoveries, let’s be clear, it’s part of the strategy, and we will develop them and it’s in line with what we have announced”.

When Mr. Pouyanne was asked another question on the same topic several minutes after the first one he responded: “The first question I already answered. And do you believe in — stop reading newspapers. Just listen to me….In the long history in the oil and gas industry, a 10Billion barrel discovery, I don’t think it exists. But no, let’s be serious about all that. It’s — all that are fantasy. I say it’s a promising discovery. Let’s drill the appraisal well, let’s test the two wells and then we will come. And when will — if really, we had such levels, which I don’t think, we’ll be happy, and you will be happy shareholders”.

“So — but again, I think, by the way, this figure refers more to the Namibia province rather than just our license. But again, I don’t want —. Let’s wait. It’s a promising discovery. It’s enough”.

The article was previously published in the April 2022 edition of the Africa Oil+Gas Report


Sonadrill Gets a Ten Well Gig in Angolan Deepwater

Sonadrill Holding Ltd), Seadrill’s 50:50 joint venture with Angola’s state oil firm Sonangol, has secured a ten-well contract with options for up to eight additional wells in Angola for the West Gemini drillship.

Total contract value for the firm portion of the contract is expected to be approximately $161Million (inclusive of mobilization revenue and additional services), with further meaningful revenue potential from a performance bonus.

Commencement is expected in Q4 2022 with a firm-term of approximately 18 months, in direct continuation of the West Gemini’s existing contract.

The West Gemini is the third drillship to be bareboat chartered into Sonadrill, along with two Sonangol-owned units, the Sonangol Quenguela and Sonangol Libongos.

Seadrill, the Norwegian drilling giant, will manage and operate the units on behalf of Sonadrill. The West Gemini is an ultra-deepwater drillship with an operational history offshore Africa.

“Together, the three units position the Seadrill joint venture as the premier rig operator in Angola, furthering the goal of building an ultra-deepwater franchise in the Golden Triangle and driving efficiencies from rig clustering in the region”, Seadrill says in a release.

Perenco Tops Up Congo’s Output Through Litanzi infill wells

The Litanzi infill drilling programme has led to increased output in the PNGF Sud acreage in Congo Brazzaville.

Two wells of the initial Litanzi infill wells have been put on production; well #1 (injector) is flowing for a cleanup period producing some oil and mostly water as expected, Well #2 (producer) was put on production on April 14th 2022 and has produced above expectation for the first eight (8) days with an average 3,368BOPD, raising the average gross PNGF production to approximately 25,000BOPD for the period.

The third well has been drilled to planned total depth (TD) and Perenco is preparing for running open hole logs.

The infill drilling programme on PNGF Sud commenced in November 2021 with the spud of the first of four wells on Litanzi as part of a total drilling programme of 17 infill and development wells across four fields in the licence area.

Sahara Commences Seismic Acquisition in Anambra Basin

Sahara Energy Fields, the Nigerian indigenous independent, has commenced a three dimensional (3D) seismic survey in Oil Prospecting Lease OPL 228, in the Anambra Basin.

The company is acquiring 350 square kilometres of full fold seismic data.

The acquisition is part of Sahara’s obligatory work programme, to fulfill the terms of the licence award, but it’s not clear if the imminent data interpretation would lead to drilling.

Sahara operates OPL 228 with a 100% exploration interest. The company also has interests in OML 18 (16%) and OML 148 (100%), both of which are producing. Its other non-producing assets include OPLs 284 and 286 (90% each).

In 2019, Sahara executed a Finance and Technical Sales Agreement (FTSA) with the state firm NPDC for OML 11, through the West Africa Gas Limited, its subsidiary. But OML 11 is not listed in the company’s upstream asset portfolio.


NNPC Commences 3D Seismic Survey in Nassarawa State, Plans Extra 2D Shoot in Chad Basin

Nigeria’s state hydrocarbon company, NNPC Ltd, has commenced acquisition of  90 square kilometres of three dimensional (3D) seismic data in Nassarawa State in the north of the country.

The project, christened ‘Kiana’, is being carried out by the same crew which just completed over 1,200-line kilometres of two dimensional (2D) seismic data in the Bida and Sokoto basins.

The crew is of the Integrated Data Services, or IDSL, the geophysical prospecting and data processing subsidiary of NNPC.

The interpreted data from the Kiana project is expected to define at least one prospect that will be drilled before the fourth quarter of 2022.

NNPC Ltd has drilled at least four wells in the last three years in Northern Nigeria. The company proposes to make extensive data acquisition in several more areas, including..

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South Africa Chases Away Exploration Firms

Gwede Mantashe, South Africa’s mineral resources and energy minister, laments that his country has been chasing away exploration companies.

Oil explorers that recently made significant oil discoveries off the West African and South West African coasts have been “harassed” out of South Africa because it wants to be an “island of angels in a sea of poverty”, Mr. Mantashe declared at an energy conference recently.

“Shell, we chased out …of the Eastern Cape and it goes and makes a huge find next door in Namibia … ENI, we chased out in KwaZulu-Natal, they went to Côte d’Ivoire and made huge oil finds …”, Mantashe told the audience at the Africa Energy Indaba in Cape Town.

It’s an odd thing for a minister to say, but Mr. Mantashe, one of his country’s most experienced practicing politicians, was referring to the perennial victories of South Africa’s activists in the country’s courts of law and public opinion.

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