Sao Tome signs agreement for Gulf of Guinea seismic work

Petroleum Geo-Services ASA, Oslo, Friday announced an exclusive agreement with Sao Tome and Principe to acquire and market 3D seismic data promoting acreage in future license rounds. The Sao Tome islands lie in the deep water 200 miles west of Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.


By the OGJ Online Staff

HOUSTON, May 4 -- Petroleum Geo-Services ASA, Oslo, Friday said it has an exclusive agreement with Sao Tome and Principe to acquire and market 3D seismic data as a preliminary step for future licensing.

The Sao Tome islands are in the deepwater Gulf of Guinea 200 miles west of Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. The republic has no oil or gas production.

Sao Tome, Principe, and four tiny islands are part of a volcanic chain that extends seaward southwesterly from Cameroon. The chain includes Equatorial Guinea�s Bioko Island.

PGS will help the government advise industry of exploration opportunities on the shelf. No timetable was given for exploration licensing rounds.

The most popular area is expected to be the northern shelf adjacent to oil discoveries in deepwater Nigeria. The northern shelf contains a deepwater extension of the Niger Delta.

Except for the island-adjacent slopes, water off Sao Tome is 3,000-10,000 ft (OGJ, June 29, 1998, p. 88). The slopes drop steeply to 800-1,000 ft of water within a few miles of shore.

PGS� acquisition and marketing of seismic data will be completed in phases depending upon the timing of the license rounds and subject to industry prefunding.

The agreement covers all of Sao Tome�s territorial waters, including the Sao Tome-Nigeria Joint Development Zone (JDZ), previously a disputed area between Sao Tome and Nigeria.

Created recently as a result of negotiations between governments of Sao Tome and Nigeria, the JDZ has yet to be ratified but, once approved, it is expected to provide a legal framework for permitting and promoting oil and gas exploration on the acreage.

More in Discoveries