Melrose to drill three wells off Bulgaria

Uchenna Izundu
International Editor

LONDON, Jan. 25 -- Melrose Resources PLC will start drilling three exploration wells in late March off Bulgaria using the Atwood Southern Cross semisubmersible drilling rig.

Melrose has a 100% working interest in four exploration concessions covering more than 10,000 sq km. Under its drilling program, Melrose can also drill another two optional wells if it has good results from its initial wells.

The first well, Izgrev No.1, has the greatest chance of success among the three, at 21%. It will be drilled to 4,700 m TD, on Block Bourgas Deep and will target a Miocene channel sealed by Pliocene shales.

The second well, Obzor No.1, on Block Kaliakra 99 in the Western Black Sea, will be drilled to 5080 m TD and has a 20% chance of success. "The target is a potentially gas-filled sandstone reservoir of Pliocene age," Melrose said, adding that the development of a discovery in this area would enable use of existing production infrastructure in Galata field, which Melrose operates.

Melrose will drill the third well, Ropotamo No.1, to 5,680 m TD on Block Rezovska45 km off eastern Bulgaria in 160 m of water. Ropotamo is a multitarget prospect with the main target being a potential sandstone reservoir interval in the Oligocene. Melrose attributes a 14% success rate to this well.

Optional wells
One optional well will target the Kamchia prospect on Block Kaliakra 99, near the Obzor prospect. "Kamchia is a multitarget prospect with potential sandstone reservoirs throughout an interval in the Pliocene. The primary target on the Kamchia prospect has P50 GIIP of 172 bcf, with a chance of success of 18%," Melrose said.

And if Kamchia has hydrocarbons, Melrose could drill the second optional well as an offset prospect to a discovery or appraisal well.

"If drilled, the Kamchia No1 well will be the second test of a Pliocene play fairway following the Obzor No. 1," Melrose added. "Although the individual potential for these two prospects is not large, there are a large number of follow-up accumulations providing a total GIIP of between 681 bcf (P90) and 1.5 tcf (P10). The total mean GIIP for these prospects is 1 tcf. The Obzor No. 1 well is targeting the lowest risk prospect and, if successful, will reduce the risk of the adjacent prospects," the company said.

Melrose said March was a good date to start drilling, as weather conditions would have improved in the Black Sea.

Melrose Executive Chairman Robert Adair said: "Success in one or more of these prospects would have a major impact on Melrose, with the benefit lying not just in the intrinsic value of the discovery itself but also in the effect it would have on the prospectivity of our concessions."

Contact Uchenna Izundu at uchennai@pennwell.com.

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