Northern Egypt-Mediterranean license blocks awarded

Several operators reported having been awarded blocks in the Egypt Natural Gas Holding Co. 2012 international bid round held last week.

Eni SPA’s International Egyptian Oil Co. was awarded Shorouk Offshore Block 9, a 3,765 sq km deepwater exploratory parcel in the eastern Mediterranean. Eni will have 100% equity in Block 9, which lies in 1,400-1,800 m of water.

Dana Gas of Sharjah was awarded a 100% working interest in the North El Arish Offshore Block 6 concession covering 2,980 sq km in as much as 1,000 m of water in the Nile Delta.

The Block 6 concession has an 8-year exploratory period with a 4-year initial term followed by two 2-year extensions. A commercial discovery would trigger a 20-year development lease period. Block 6 lies on strike with recent large gas discoveries in the Levantine basin.

Dana Gas noted that it produced gas, condensate, LPG, and crude oil at an average 32,200 b/d of oil equivalent in 2012 from 10 Nile Delta fields “in spite of recent operational challenges.

“Pending resolution of the receivables position production is slated to increase in 2013 as compression facilities are added, new fields are brought on stream and work commences on increasing the throughput of the El Wastani plant to above 180 MMscfd,” the company said. “Further increase of production capacity to 250 MMscfd by early 2014 is designed to maximize liquids production and optimize asset value.”

Dana Gas said it is Egypt’s sixth largest gas producer and is firmly committed to pursuing further investment opportunities in the region, in partnership with both local and international energy companies.

Meanwhile, Dana Gas said it has been prequalified as a nonoperator in Lebanon’s first offshore license round that opens on May 2, 2013. As part of the bid, only consortia of three or more companies will be awarded a block, with each nonoperator obliged to have a minimum 10% working interest. Ten blocks that cover 1,500-2,500 sq km each in deep water are available offshore Lebanon.

Sea Dragon Energy Inc., Calgary, was awarded 100% interest in the 1,275 sq km South Disouq concession onshore in the Nile Delta 65 km north of Cairo.

South Disouq is on trend with Abu Madi accumulations to the north that contain giant Abu Madi gas field with more than 3 tcf of original gas in place and the Baltim fields in the Mediterranean. The block is in the same area of the Nile Delta where Sea Dragon’s management discovered large El Wastani field with more than 500 bcf of OGIP.

Sea Dragon will shoot 300 sq km of 3D seismic and drill at least one exploratory well once the government approves the award of South Disouq.

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