By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Sept. 28 -- A new core area for future appraisal and potential development is emerging in the central part of Menzel Ledjmet Block 405b in eastern Algeria's Berkine basin, said operator First Calgary Petroleums Ltd., Calgary.
On the block's east side, First Calgary looks for Sonatrach to issue an exploitation license in late 2006 for giant MLE gas-condensate field. MLE, with gross probable and possible reserves of 6.6 tcf and 903 million bbl in Lower Devonian to Triassic pays at the end of 2005, is to start producing in 2009.
MLE, which First Calgary has appraised since obtaining the 1,104-sq-km block in 2001, is one of the largest gas discoveries in the country in recent years. Current mapping indicates it covers more than 85 sq km.
The deepest Devonian reservoir (Siegenian) is at 4,500 m, and reserve potential exists in the deeper Gedinnian (lowermost Devonian) formation.
Since shooting 600 sq km of 3D seismic west of MLE field in 2003, First Calgary has drilled five exploration wells and an appraisal well: LEC-1, MZLN-1, MZLS-1, LES-1, LES-2, and LEW-1. All were successful in multiple geological horizons in what the company calls its Central Area Field Complex.
LES-6 and LEC-2 are to be drilled by the end of 2006, completing the drilling of all of the block's attractive exploration targets, First Calgary said.
The company gave back the southwestern 30% of the block at the end of 2004 and must relinquish the rest of the block without discoveries at the end of 2006.
Further appraisal starting in 2007 will aim to secure the next commercialization stage following MLE.
Meanwhile, the company drilled, cased, and tested the Zemlet er Rakeb-1 exploration well in the northwest part of the block earlier this year. It gauged hydrocarbons at rates sufficient to support drilling ZER-2 at 4.3 km southwest.
GSM-1 near the south end of the block also tested hydrocarbons and is to be followed by GSME-1.