P.2 ~ Malaysia, the Philippines open more offshore acreage for exploration

Thirteen blocks and 11 petroleum areas are open for bids under the current Malaysian and Philippines licensing rounds. Most of the acreage is offshore and contains a range of proven and untested plays in different settings. Six of the blocks have not been offered before. Zebra Data Sciences in the UK is promoting both programs globally on behalf of Petronas and The Philippines Department of Energy.

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West Luzon plays

The Philippines DoE recently extended the bidding process for PECR5, comprising 11 petroleum areas, until June 30, 2015. Zebra and UK consultancy Count Geophysics collaborated to compile all available digital data, paper seismic sections and logs from these areas that were held in the Manila data repository. They scanned, digitized, edited, and enhanced the existing paper data to create the current data packages. Interested parties can view the resultant database online prior to purchasing these packages in the Zebra-administered EZData Room. The DoE is offering seven-year exploration terms, extendable by a further three years.

Areas 8-11 are four contiguous offshore blocks in the West Luzon basin, all on offer for the first time. They range in size from 4,520-4,880 sq km (1,745-1,884 sq mi), and span water depths from 25-4,600 m (82-15,092 ft). No wells have been drilled on the acreage so there is no proven petroleum system, although there is extensive sedimentary thickness. Analysis to date suggests potential plays or source rocks at Oligocene-Miocene level.

Of the other blocks, two were relinquished recently – Area 5 (formerly SC-60) by Shell and Area 1 by Pearl. Two wells have been drilled on Area 5, on the north flank of the East Palawan basin. One of these, Dumaran-1, had significant oil and gas shows. Area 1 (Ragay) is a shallow-water block in the central South East Luzon basin. Previous license holder Pearl acquired 3D seismic during 2009-10. This has been reprocessed, throwing up several large prospects and leads, with identified play types including inversion and tilted block structures, reefal build-ups, and isolated pinnacle reefs.

Among the other blocks offered is Area 7 within the Recto Bank basin, adjacent to the prolific Northwest Palawan basin. Although no wells have been drilled in this large deepwater tract, 16 offset wells are provided in the package, including on the Sampaguita gas discovery where appraisal drilling is scheduled for 2016. Area 6 is an undrilled frontier area on the southeast flank of the Sulu basin. One well, Ilog-1, has been drilled on Area 3 with gas shows. The concession is in the southern Iloilo basin offshore Panay Island, 525 km (326 mi) southeast of Manila. It is thought to contain significant potential for oil and gas, although water depths beyond 200 m (656 ft) remain unexplored.

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