VICTORIA, Seychelles – The arrival of Russian seismic survey vessel Akademik Fersman in Port Victoria, Seychelles, over the weekend is further evidence of petrochemical companies' interest in the northwest Indian Ocean.
Akademik Fersman, operated by Russian geophysical service company Dalmorneftegeophysica (DMNG), is expected to spend a month in Seychelles' waters carrying out the first phase of a two-year exploration program. The work is being conducted for a joint venture of Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp. (JOGMEC), the government of Seychelles, and national oil company PetroSeychelles.
Additionally, exploration and exploitation are already well advanced in Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, and Tanzania, with refineries and shipping terminals either planned or under construction, but active exploration has also restarted in Somalia.
In February,Soma Oil & Gas contracted SeaBird Exploration to carry out 2D seismic surveys off the coast of Somalia. SeaBird's survey vessels Northern Explorer and Hawk Explorer are expected to remain in the Somali exclusive economic zone (EEZ) until mid-May. In the Union of the Comoros, the government recently allotted exploration licenses to a joint venture of Bahari Resources and Discover Exploration.