Tullow, Africa Oil to test Ekales oil discovery in Kenya

Petrophysical analysis of wireline logs and formation fluid sampling indicates a potential pay zone of 60-100 m in the Auwerwer and Upper Lokone sandstone reservoirs that is to be confirmed by flow testing at the Ekales prospect on Block 13T onshore Kenya, the fourth oil discovery in the East African Rift basin.

Tullow Oil PLC and Africa Oil Corp., Vancouver, BC, also updated progress on four more exploratory wells in Kenya and Ethiopia. Two more shallow-depth rigs are expected to arrive in the fourth quarter, bringing the rig count to seven.

The Ekales-1 wellsite is between the Ngamia-1 and Twiga South-1 oil discoveries, and the reservoir properties at Ekales appear similar to those previously encountered. Once operations end the rig will move to drill the Amosing-1 prospect south of Ngamia-1.

Africa Oil chief executive officer Keith Hill said, “With 10 additional leads and prospects in this basin we can expect additional discoveries in the immediate future. We are equally excited about the basin opening wells being drilled in two new areas and the pace of exploration ahead.”

The Agete-1 well, also on Block 13T, was spudded on Sept. 16 and is drilling 7 km north of the Twiga discovery and along the basin bounding fault trend that Africa Oil refers to as the string of pearls. Consulting engineers gave Agete a predrill prospective resource best estimate of 276 million bbl of recoverable oil with a 54% chance of success.

The Bahasi-1 well on the Bahasi prospect in Kenya Block 9 is expected to spud within days. Africa Oil will operate Bahasi on behalf of its 50% joint venture partner Marathon Kenya Limited BV. The prospect is a large anticlinal feature in the Lower Cretaceous Anza rift and is on trend with the Paipai discovery made early this year in Kenya Block 10A.

The Bahasi predrill prospective resource best estimate is 320 million bbl of recoverable oil. Under the terms of the farmout, Marathon Oil will pay for drilling this well.

The Tutule-1 well was spudded on Sept. 21 on the South Omo Block in Ethiopia and will test the Tertiary rift play in a well-defined horst block feature adjacent to and 4 km east of the recently drilled Sabisa-1 well that proved the basic elements of a hydrocarbon system including reservoir, seal, and source.

Interests in the South Omo block are Tullow Oil operator with 50% working interest, Africa Oil 30%, and Marathon Ethiopia Ltd. BV 20%.

Meanwhile, New African Global Energy is operating the El Kuran well expected to spud in October. El Kuran is a Jurassic fractured carbonate play on a large anticlinal feature previously been drilled by Tenneco in the early 1970s that tested light oil at low rates. The primary goal of this well is to prove commercial flow rates, and fracture stimulation and horizontal drilling may be considered.

A full tensor gradiometry survey is under way in Africa Oil’s wholly owned rift basin area in Ethiopia and is expected to be completed in October.

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