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Uruguay launches third offshore licensing round

Written by  OE Staff Wednesday, 20 September 2017 03:08

Uruguay's Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mining (MIEM) and national oil firm ANCAP have launched the Uruguay Round 3, an offshore licensing round.

Image from iStock.

Seventeen areas are offered in the three offshore basins, in 50-4000m water depth. Areas will be divided in Type I, Type II and Type III according to water depth. Exploratory periods will be for eight years for Type I and Type II areas and of 10 years for Type III areas. The contract term including the Exploitation Period is 30 years, which could be extended 10 additional years.

During an event in Houston, on 18 September, ANCAP’s team presented the bidding Round terms of the round, the main features of the contract model, the petroleum geology offshore Uruguay and the exploration activities developed in Uruguay.

The bidding terms and contract model of Uruguay Round 3 are similar to the successful Uruguay Round II, but with more flexible requirements regarding the qualification of oil companies and with regards to the required exploratory program for each area, says ANCAP. 

Several international oil firms attended, including Anadarko, Apache, Hess, Nexen-CNOOC, Lukoil, Cobalt, Kosmos Energy, ConocoPhillips, Chevron, Noble Energy, Murphy Oil, ONGC Videsh, Talos Energy and Frontera Energy, among others.

Data Rooms are available in Houston until 22 September, with geological and geophysical data (2D seismic and 3D, electromagnetism, wells logs, grav and mag, etc) of offshore Uruguayan basins, available. A similar event will be held in London next month. 

The qualification submission deadline is 6 April 2018. Offers will open on 26 April 2018. 

Uruguay's licensing rounds started in 2007, with the creation of the Exploration and Production Department of ANCAP, which carried out Uruguay Round 2009, from which the first two E&P contracts offshore Uruguay were signed after 30 years without any activity of exploration of hydrocarbons.

ANCAP launched Uruguay Round II in 2012. This saw eight E&P contracts subscribed and investments in exploration of hydrocarbons committed. 

French oil major Total drilled the then-deepest water well in the world, Raya-1, in Uruguay in 2016, using Maersk’s ultra-deepwater Maersk Venturer drillship. However, while the Raya reservoir was believed to be good, not much more information has been released about the prospect since.

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