Exploration/Development news briefs, Sept. 13

Centurion Energy International � Atlantic Caspian Resources � TOO BN Munai � Remington Oil & Gas � Magnum Hunter Resources ... CXY Energy Offshore � Statoil � Vanco Energy � Aker Geo � Ness Energy International � Israel Oil � Lapidoth Israel Oil Prospectors � Sonatrach � Genesis Exploration � Sodra Petroleum � Saibos � Elf Petroleum Nigeria � Bow Valley Energy � Brovig Production Services � Premier Oil Exploration � Roc Oil UK � British-Borneo Oil & Gas � Conoco UK � TotalFinaElf ... and more

Centurion Energy International Inc. said the Al Manzah No. 2 horizontal development well on the Grombalia Permit in Tunisia reached total depth of 1,162 m in the Bou Dabbous Sept. 4. The well tested at initial rates of 9,000 b/d of oil, with no water production, and should begin production this week. The Al Manzah No. 1 is now on production, and another well on the permit is expected to spud in October. Centurion operates the permit through subsidiary Ecumed Petroleum and owns a 37.5% working interest.

Algerian state oil and gas company Sonatrach on Monday said it made a discovery with the Hassi d'Zabat-2 well in block 439, 50 km south of Hassi Messaoud in southern Algeria. The well was drilled to 3,590 m and flowed 1,253 b/d of oil and 1.25 MMcfd of gas with 620 psi of pressure on test. Sonatrach said this is the second oil discovery achieved this year in the region, following Hassi Tarfa in January.

Atlantic Caspian Resources PLC, London, said Wednesday that it plans to drill a second well, consistent with its original plan to explore and exploit its Akkulkowsky field (Akkul) in Kazakhstan. The well site is currently being determined. Atlantic Caspian Resources owns an effective interest of 70% in Akkul field through its ownership in the partnership TOO BN Munai. TOO BN Consulting owns the remaining 30% of the partnership. In September 1998, TOO BN Munai was awarded exploratory oil and gas licenses on the Akkul field.

Remington Oil & Gas Corp. announced it participated in two successful exploratory wells in the Gulf of Mexico. Wireline logs and formation tests indicate over 100 ft of true vertical thickness gas pay in a single sand at High Island A-441 No. 1 exploratory well. Remington drilled this well to 8,700 ft, set production casing, and has commenced completion operations. Production is expected in the first quarter 2001. Remington operates the well with a 75% working interest; Magnum Hunter Resources Inc. owns the remaining 25%. Production casing is being set at the West Cameron Block 170 No. 3 exploratory well. The well was drilled to 15,880 ft measured depth and logged 170 ft of apparent oil and gas pay in six sand intervals. Plans are to complete and flow-test the well then install a caisson structure. Flowline installation from the No. 3 well back to the West Cameron 170 main processing facility is expected by the end of the year, says Remington. CXY Energy Offshore Inc. operates the well with a 56% working interest; Remington owns 42%.

Statoil AS said it drilled a dry hole in the Fylla license 03/97 off West Greenland. The Qulleq-1 well was drilled to 2,937 m below sea level and found Early Cretaceous sands. Fylla lies 140 km west of the capital, Nuuk, and the wildcat was drilled in 1,152 m of water. Statoil said information from the well will be analyzed in detail to prepare for the 2001 licensing round in the area. Statoil holds 38.25% interest in the well; Phillips Petroleum Co. unit Phillips Petroleum Greenland AS holds 38.25%; Nunaoil AS, 15%; and Dansk Olie og Naturgas AS unit DONG Grønland AS, 8.5%.

Vanco Energy Co., Houston, has entered into a contract with Aker Geo, a unit of Norwegian company Aker Maritime AS, to undertake a 3D survey covering Vanco's acreage off West Africa. Between now and the end of April 2001, the Aker Amadeus and the Aker Symphony will collect up to 9,000 sq km of 3D seismic data on Vanco's licenses. The survey will cover key leads and prospects in all of Vanco's deepwater acreage off West Africa previously covered only by 2D seismic, said Vanco.

Ness Energy International Inc., Willow Park, Tex., said it and partner Israel Oil Co. will reenter the Har-Sedom No. 1 well and deepen it to 3,500 m. Ness will enter an agreement with a drilling contractor by Sept. 15 and begin drilling the well by Dec. 1. Lapidoth Israel Oil Prospectors Corp. Ltd. is the proposed drilling contractor, said Ness, but no contract has been signed.

Genesis Exploration Ltd., Calgary, will increase its exploration and development spending in 2000 by 14% to $125 million (Can.) from $110 million. The figure excludes any spending for property acquisitions. Genesis says the increase approximately parallels increased cash flow from oil and gas revenues on a full-year production average of 15,000 boe/d. Company operations are centered in the Peace River Arch, West Central, and Northeast regions of Alberta.

Sodra Petroleum AB has reached agreement with the Falkland Islands government to exchange its commitment to drill a second exploration well in Tranche F for the acquisition of a defined amount of 2D seismic data. This acquisition will take place in the fourth quarter of 2000 or in the first quarter of 2001�the summer period in the southern hemisphere. The program will be designed to enhance the coverage in certain licensed areas and to provide coverage of an area outside the currently licensed part of the basin. The acquisition of the seismic data will complete all the work commitments remaining on Tranche F, which Sodra intends to retain until the expiry of the first exploration phase in October 2001. No Falkland Islands well has found a commercial amount of hydrocarbons, despite promising signs.

Saibos CML, a 50-50 subsidiary of Bouygues Offshore and Saipem SPA, has signed a commitment letter with Elf Petroleum Nigeria Ltd. to supply one production platform, two tripods, one flare, and three associated bridges for Elf's Amenam field off Nigeria. The $330 million contract includes engineering, procurement, fabrication, transport, installation, hook-up, and precommissioning of the oil and gas installations. The platform will be able to process 130,000 b/d of oil and 16 MMcfd of gas. It includes one integrated deck weighing 11,000 tonnes, one eight-leg jacket weighing 1,600 tonnes, and piles weighing a total of 2,000 tonnes. Delivery is scheduled for mid-2003.

Bow Valley Energy Ltd., Calgary, said partners in UK North Sea Block 22/2a have hired Norwegian firm Brovig Production Services Ltd. to drill and develop the Chestnut oil field in the North Sea. A letter of intent was signed in April (OGJ, Apr. 24, 2000, p. 35). Brovig will drill a well and pump oil to a floating platform in return for payments from oil production revenues. Bow Valley Pres. Walter DeBoni said the deal is an innovative cooperative approach to development of smaller North Sea fields and should serve as a model for future initiatives. The Chestnut field is scheduled to begin production of about 15,000 b/d next spring. Premier Oil Exploration Ltd. operates the block with 30%; Bow Valley holds 17.75%; Roc Oil UK Ltd., 17.75%; British-Borneo Oil & Gas PLC, 12.5%; Conoco Inc. unit Conoco UK Theta, 12%; and TotalFinaElf SA, 10%.

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