First Calgary to explore Berkine basin block

Canadian company First Calgary Petroleum Ltd. (FCP) has signed a production-sharing contract with Algerian state oil and gas firm Sonatrach to explore a block in the Berkine basin in southeastern Algeria. FCP has studied the geology of Algeria for 3 years and is negotiating for a second block in the basin.


Canadian company First Calgary Petroleum Ltd. (FCP) has signed a production-sharing contract with Algerian state oil and gas firm Sonatrach to explore a block in the Berkine basin in southeastern Algeria. FCP has studied the geology of Algeria for 3 years and is negotiating for a second block in the basin.

Under the PSC agreement, FCP will explore Block 406A Rhourde Yakoub in the basin. The firm says 800 km of existing seismic data on the 970 sq km block indicate a number of prospective leads.

The agreement consists of an initial 3-year period followed by an optional 2-year period. The minimum work commitment in the first period includes reprocessing existing seismic data, acquiring 200 km of 2D and 100 km of 3D seismic, and drilling two exploration wells. Projected costs of the first period total $18 million (US). The second period will cost an estimated $13 million and will involve acquisition of 50 km of 2D seismic and drilling of two more exploration wells.

Exploration success rates are among the highest in the world in the Berkine basin, notes FCP. Geological features include two "world-class" mature source rocks; a stacked succession of porous sandstone reservoirs, folded and faulted into hydrocarbon traps; and an overlying blanket of impermeable shales and evaporites acting as a "super-seal" to oil and gas migration, said the firm.

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