With the award of a rig contract to carry out the drilling and completion programme for the Aje shallow-water field offshore Lagos, the first oil production is expected to begin in the state by December this year.
The operator of the Oil Mining Lease 113 has, on behalf of the joint venture partners, entered into a rig contract with Saipem for the Scarabeo 3 drilling rig to carry out the drilling and completion programme for the Aje Field Cenomanian oil development, Panoro Energy said in a statement on Monday.
The joint venture partners led by Yinka Folawiyo Petroleum Company Limited (the operator) had in October last year taken the final investment decision to develop the first phase of the Aje field.
According to the statement, the Scarabeo 3 rig is a semi-submersible rig currently stationed offshore Lagos. The rig will be moved 18 nautical miles to the Aje drilling location and will be used to carry out well operations for the first phase of the Aje Cenomanian Oil field development that includes two subsea production wells.
It said the well operations would comprise the completion of the existing Aje-4 well as a production well, and the drilling and completion of a new well, Aje-5, which would be drilled to the Aje-2 subsurface location.
The Aje-2 well is said to have demonstrated high reservoir productivity in a Cenomanian production test conducted in 1997, flowing approximately 3,700 barrels of oil per day of 41˚API oil under suboptimal well conditions.
Well operations are expected to commence in early third quarter of 2015 and are likely to take approximately 90 days to complete, according to the statement.
It stated that once well operations had been completed, subsea equipment would be installed and the wells would be tied back to the Front Puffin floating, production, storage and offloading vessel, currently undergoing refurbishment in Singapore.
The Chief Executive Officer, Panoro Energy, Mr. John Hamilton, was quoted in the statement as saying, “Panoro is very pleased to be entering into the rig contract for the drilling and completion of the Aje development wells. We have been able to achieve a lower rig rate than was expected when the Final Investment Decision was made in October 2014.
“With well operations expected to commence in the next few weeks, we will continue moving towards our incremental growth strategy of converting Panoro’s discovered resource base into commercial production and generating positive cash flow in 2016.”
Aje is an offshore field located in the western part of Nigeria in the Dahomey Basin at the border with Benin Republic, with the first oil targeted for December 2015, the statement said.
The field is situated in water depths ranging from 100 to 1,000 metres about 24 kilometres from the coast. The field contains hydrocarbon resources in sandstone reservoirs in three main levels – a Turonian gas condensate reservoir, a Cenomanian oil reservoir and an Albian gas condensate reservoir.
Yinka Folawiyo Petroleum Company is the operator, with 25 per cent interest in the field. The partners are Vitol, First Hydrocarbons Nigeria Limited, Energy Equity Resources Limited, Panoro Energy ASA and Jacka Resources Limited.
The JV partners had in January 2014 submitted the Field Development Plan for the Aje field to the Department of Petroleum Resources. The FDP was approved in March and is primarily focused on the development of the Cenomanian oil reservoir.