VAALCO gets IFC loan for work off Gabon

VAALCO Energy Inc., Houston, has received a $65-million reserve-based loan facility from IFC, part of the World Bank Group, to support further oil and gas development on the Etame Marin Block offshore Gabon.

Subsidiary VAALCO Gabon, operator with a 28.1% working interest in the block, plans to install two platforms this year.

One, a 4-pile, 8-slot unit, will be installed in the second half of the year in 85 m of water on the southern edge of Etame field. The cost will be $175 million gross. The operator plans to drill three wells from the platform initially at $25 million/well gross to develop 10 million boe of reserves.

Also in the second half VAALCO Gabon plans to install a similarly configured platform, also in 85 m of water, in what it calls the South East Etame/North Tchibala (SEENT) project (OGJ Online, June 16, 2010). Three initial wells will cost $25 million each. The project is to develop 7 million bbl of oil reserves. Gross investment in the SEENT platform will be $150 million.

Current production from the Etame Marin block recently was 18,000 b/d gross. Flow is from wells completed subsea in Etame field and tied back to a floating production, storage, and offloading vessel and from wells drilled from platforms on Avouma-South Tchibala and Ebouri fields, all tied back to the FPSO.

VAALCO’s partners in the Etame Marin permit are Addax, Sasol, Tullow, Sojitz, and PetroEnergy.

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