Mexican authorities reiterated Petróleos Mexicanos’s (Pemex) role as operator of Zama field offshore Mexico, a move partner Talos Energy Inc. has contested (OGJ Online, Sept. 7, 2021).
Talos received the final Unitization Resolution (UR) from Mexico's Ministry of Energy (SENER) regarding, among other things, that Pemex would serve as operator of field development, it said in a release Mar. 28.
The Houston-based exploration and production company will participate in activities related to reaching FID, while also continuing to evaluate various strategic and legal options, according to the release.
Unitization of Zama was required after determination that the field lies within both the Talos-operated Block 7 and the adjacent AE-0152-Uchukil Asignación in the Cuencas del Sureste, in the Bay of Campeche in Mexico, operated by Pemex, that provides for joint development of the entire reservoir instead of each party developing its own block.
Talos will maintain a 17.35% participating interest in the field, and the company anticipates submission of a unit development plan for approval by the working interest partners within 6-12 months. A final investment decision (FID) is expected in 2023.
Talos, as operator and 35% partner in the Block 7 lease, discovered Zama field in 2017 as the first private sector consortium to enter Mexico following the country's energy reforms (OGJ Online, July 7, 2017). An independent third-party reserves auditor estimated discovered recoverable resource volumes of 735-950 MMboe, and Zama could produce over 160,000 boe/d once fully developed.
Talos has invested some $104 million in Zama since 2015 and these past investments are subject to cost recovery under the production sharing contract.