Development drilling under way at Okoro East offshore Nigeria

Afren has issued an update on its shallow-water development prospects offshore Nigeria.

Offshore staff

LONDON– Afren has issued an update on its shallow-water development prospects offshore Nigeria.

Last month the company and partner Amni International Petroleum Development started early development drilling at the Okoro East field.

The Okoro-14 development well is being drilled from the Okoro main field wellhead platform - the aim is to establish initial production from Okoro East, 2 km (1.2 mi) east of the Okoro main field, via theOkoro FPSO. The partners will use this production information to finalize full field development options, with potentially up to eight further production wells under a full field development scenario.

A side track was also drilled in the existing Okoro-5 production well on the Okoro main field, designed to access additional oil volumes in a previously un-swept area of the reservoir. The side track, drilled to 9,800 ft (2,987 m) MD, encountered oil pay in the target reservoir, and a 2,500-ft (762-m) lateral drainage section within the pay zone was brought onstream on July 22, at a stabilized rate of 2,000 b/d.

Elsewhere, processing has been completed of a 348-sq km (134-sq mi) Ocean Bottom Cable 3D seismic survey acquired over theEbok/Okwok/OML 115 area late last year, and results have been integrated into the existing data set.

The new data are assisting with placement of an appraisal well on Okwok to test upside potential, and development planning prior to submission of a field development plan to the Nigerian authorities. The most likely scenario is a dedicated production processing platform on Okwok connected to theEbok FSO, 13 km (8 mi) to the west, which has 1.2-MMbbl storage capacity.

The partners plan to drill an exploration well on the block this fall, possibly targeting the Ufon structure.

In May, Afren reported that a well on theEbok north fault block (NFB) had encountered good quality oil in the same Tertiary reservoir sands equivalent to those in production at the main Ebok field development. The well was targeting a separate fault block structure 2 km to the north of the main Ebok field.   

Logging operations have been completed, with analysis suggesting oil in place of more than 100 MMbbl. The well will now be suspended while Afren and partner Oriental determine a development solution, which could involve early drilling of new production wells from the existing wellhead platform at the Ebok west fault block, followed by a full field development of Ebok NFB.

On the OPL 310 concession, Afren has identified several prospects within the same Senonian, Turonian, and Albian sandstone intervals that have brought large discoveries along the West African Transform Margin from Ghana to Côte d’Ivoire. Planning is under way for an exploration well later this year.

In block 1 offshore Nigeria São Tomé & Príncipe, where Afren has a minority interest, operator Total discovered oil and gas this spring while drilling the Obo-2 and Enitimi-1 wells. Total is evaluating the commercial viability.

Offshore South Africa, Afren is a partner in block 2B, where 600 sq km (231 sq mi) of 3D seismic data will be acquired during 1Q 2013, with exploration drilling set to start in 2014.

Afren operates blocks L17/L18 offshore Kenya. In January, the company completed acquisition of 1,207 km (750 mi) of additional 2D seismic data targeting the deeper water portion of the block.

Early interpretation has identified four new prospects, in addition to previously mapped prospects in the shallow water. These structures, the company claims, represent a major new play with lower risk and greater materiality than the shallow-water play, and increase prospective resources on the block to 1.1 Bboe.

Following consultation with Kenya’s Ministry of Energy, Afren has opted to acquire 1,000 sq km (386 sq mi) of 3D seismic this year in lieu of the well commitment, in order to better understand the deepwater prospectivity ahead of exploration drilling in 2013.

Finally, the company and its partners acquired more than 900 km (559 mi) of 2D seismic late last year in deeper water areas of the Tanga block license. Interpretation has reinforced previous views of the prospectivity of these areas, in the same play identified in Kenya blocks L17/18 to the north. A 550-sq km (212-sq mi) 3D seismic survey is planned for the second part of this year, prior to exploration drilling.


More in Field Development