TAQA takes stake in Cladhan close to North Sea stronghold

TAQA Bratani has agreed to purchase interests in various offshore assets that Premier Oil will own after completing its acquisition of Encore Oil.

Offshore staff

ABERDEEN, UK – TAQA Bratani has agreed to purchase interests in various offshore assets that Premier Oil will own after completing its acquisition of Encore Oil.

Under the arrangement, TAQA will take a 16.6% interest in the Sterling-operated Cladhan area in UK northern North Sea blocks 210/29a and 210/30a, 17.5 km (10.8 mi) southwest of the TAQA-operated Tern platform. This will involve a cash consideration of $54.8 million, including an allocation for tax allowances.

TAQA will also farm in to blocks 28/5, 29/1d and 28/10a in the central North Sea.

Leo Koot, TAQA Bratani's managing director, said: “Cladhan is located adjacent to our existing operations in the northern North Sea and it is a significant development in the area.”

Block 28/10a includes the Coaster prospect – TAQA has agreed to fund 80% of costs for a well, likely to be drilled next year, plus 50% of back costs. Additionally, TAQA will assume certain contractual rights associated with a joint study and bidding agreement.

Premier expects to wrap up the EnCore takeover in January. On completion, Premier will have a 50% operating stake in the Catcher development in the central North Sea.

The company expects to renew drilling in the Catcher area early next year, starting with a well on the Carnaby prospect.

Following completion of EnCore’s current appraisal well on Tudor Rose in the central sector, the rig will drill the Premier-operated East Fyne appraisal well, and later the Bluebell prospect, again in the central sector.

Premier expects the result to come through soon from its first operated well offshore Norway, on the Gardrofa structure in the Norwegian North Sea. If successful, Gardrofa could be co-developed with the adjacent Bream field.

Elsewhere in the region, Premier has a 30% interest in license PL359, containing the Luno II prospect on the southwest margin of the Utsira High. Operator Lundin plans to drill an exploration well here in mid-2012.

Premier has agreed to pay Nexen Exploration Norge $5.5 million for interests in licenses PL539 (40%), PL566S (50%) and PL 565 (60%), and will seek to operate all three permits, subject to government and partner approval.

The acreage is next to Premier-operated PL567, with prospectivity flanking the Mandal high, and target intervals in the Jurassic sands.

11/18/2011

More in Regional Reports