Angolan jury approves Statoil pre-salt bids

Statoil is in line for two new operatorships offshore Angola, under the country’s pre-salt bid round in the Kwanza basin.

Offshore staff

LUANDA, Angola -- Statoil is in line for two new operatorships offshore Angola, under the country’s pre-salt bid round in the Kwanza basin.

According to state oil company Sonangol, the Angolan jury approved Statoil’s bid to operate blocks 38 and 39 and to participate in blocks 22, 25, and 40. However, formal confirmation of the licenses is subject to the Angolan Ministry of Petroleum’s decision concerning any appeal of the jury’s decision, and the successful negotiation of contractual terms including production sharing agreements (PSAs).

If successful, Statoil will gain a 40% operating share in block 38, covering 6,298 sq km (2,431 sq mi), and the 7,800-sq km (3,011-sq mi) block 39. It will also pick up 20% of blocks 22, 25, and 40, where the respective acreage is 5,180 sq km (2,000 sq mi), 4,825 sq km (1,863 sq mi), and 7,588 sq km (2,929 sq mi).

Tim Dodson, executive vice president for Exploration, said: “The Angolan pre-salt is a frontier play with high potential. This presents Statoil with the opportunity to access several high impact exploration prospects which are believed to be analogous to pre-salt Brazil. Securing a multiple block portfolio early on in the exploration of this new play is a big advantage. Such a strong and influential position gives Statoil exposure to significant upside potential should the play be proven.”

As a partner in blocks 4/05, 15, 15/06, 17, 31, and 34, Statoil already participates in 10 producing fields and in four new fields under development (Pazflor, PSVM, Kizomba satellites, and CLOV). The company’s equity production from Angola is 180,000 b/d of oil, nearly one tenth of its total production.

Statoil claims that its technical and subsurface expertise, deepwater exploration experience and its track record in planning and executing large complex offshore projects will help unlock the exploration potential of the pre-salt play.

01/26/2011

More in Regional Reports