The Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) consortium has contracted Saipem
to install the 105-km (65-mi) offshore section of the TAP trunkline sys-
tem taking gas from the Azeri sector of the Caspian Sea to Eastern Eu-
rope. Later this year Saipem will start work on the stretch across the
Adriatic Sea from the Albanian coast to San Foca, eastern Italy. The Cas-
toro Sei, supported by the trench/pipelay barge Castoro 10, will lay the
36-in. diameter pipeline in water depths of up to 820 m ( 2,690 ft).
Eni and partner Rockhopper expect to ratify a production-sharing
agreement later this year for shallow-water block 9 offshore northern
Croatia. The signing process had to be delayed due to the country’s
general election last November. Rockhopper anticipates initial seis-
mic studies over the block, which includes the Ksenija gas discovery.
Egypt is preparing a new bid round taking which should include
offshore blocks in the Gulf of Suez, Red Sea, and the Mediterranean
Sea. Interest in the deepwater sector has surged following Eni’s giant Zohr gas discovery.
Saudi Arabia has reportedly blocked a resumption of production
from the Khafji field in the offshore zone the country shares with
Kuwait. This follows an earlier agreement between the two coun-
tries to re-start the field which had been shut in since October 2014
due to environmental regulation breaches.
Masirah Oil’s Manarah- 1 well in block 50 offshore Oman has de-
livered oil shows from the primary sandstone and carbonate targets.
The company has discussed a time extension with the Ministry of
Oil and Gas to allow for follow-up wells.
BP has contracted Bos Shelf LLC, a partnership between Saipem
and Star Gulf FZCO, to transport and install the deeper-water subsea
production systems for the Shah Deniz
Stage 2 project, 90 km ( 56 mi) offshore in
the Azeri sector of the Caspian Sea, using
the newbuild subsea construction vessel Khankendi. Water depths range from
75-550 m (246-1,804 ft). The reactivated
pipelay barge Israfil Huseinov will install
deeper water flowlines during 2019.
Tanzania’s government has authorized
Aminex to acquire 700 sq km (270 sq mi)
of 3D seismic over the deepwater part of
the Nyuni offshore concession, replacing
a previous commitment for a 2D shallow
water survey. Aminex hopes to identify
prospectivity on trend with deepwater gas
discoveries in other Tanzanian blocks.
Sterling Energy has withdrawn from
the Ambilobe exploration block off Madagascar, leaving Pura Vida Mauritius as
the sole concessionaire. As operator,
Sterling completed a 1,175-sq km (453-sq
mi) 3D survey over the acreage in 2015.
ONGC will assume operatorship of
the Tapti field facilities from current co-
owners BG and Reliance Industries. The
processing platforms and associated pipelines for the decommis-
sioned field will be redeployed for use on ONGC’s Daman and C- 26
Cluster developments in the Arabian Sea, designed to boost produc-
tion of gas and condensate from the Daman block. The company is
also installing 10 new wellhead platforms with 36 wells, and a riser
Gazprom plans to produce 1. 12 bcm of gas and 182,000 tons of
gas-condensate this year from the Kirinskoye field in the Sakhalin
III concession offshore eastern Russia. Drilling of production wells
continues using the company’s floating rigs Polyarnaya Zvezda and
Severnoye Siyaniye. Gazprom expects to bring the Yuzhno-Kirniskoye
gas field in the same concession onstream in 2012, via an eventual
37 production wells.
CNOOC has started oil production from the Panyu 11-5 field in
the Pearl River Mouth basin in the South China Sea. Average water
depth is 110 m (361 ft) – development involves drilling three hori-
zontal wells from the Panyu 5-1 oil field facilities.
The company and partner Primeline have also committed to a second phase of exploration in offshore block 33/07, despite two sub-commercial gas wells last year. They hope to prove larger volumes
on the acreage that could be developed through their nearby LS36-1
AWE has agreed to transfer its 42.5% interest in the Bulu PSC off-
shore East Java to a subsidiary of HyOil for up to $20 million, pend-
ing approvals. KrisEnergy operates the concession which includes
the undeveloped Lengo gas field.
Mubadala Petroleum expected the jackup Atwood Orca to spud the
Sri-Trang- 1 exploratory well last month in the G1/48 concession in
the northern Gulf of Thailand. The location is 18 km ( 11 mi) north-
northeast of the producing Manora oil field. The main target is mid-
Miocene lacustrine sands – a discovery
could involve installation of a production platform, connected to the existing
Around $1 billion could be spent on
exploration in the Great Australian Bight
off South Australia if current plans secure approval, according to the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA). During recent
Senate hearings, an APPEA official said
discovery of a major new oil province in
the area would help offset the country’s
rapidly declining oil production, with less
than 10 years of proven domestic crude
MEC Resources subsidiary Advent
Energy and partner Bounty Oil & Gas
have identified a potential gas prospect in
the PEP11 permit in the offshore Sydney
basin. The Baleen structure is thought to
be analogous with gas-condensate fields
in the Bowen basin onshore southeast
Queensland. The partners planned a seis-
mic survey ahead of a well, 30 km ( 18. 6
mi) southeast of Newcastle. •
Location of the Sri Trang- 1 well offshore Thailand.
(Map courtesy Tap Oil)