Global owner and operator of floating production storage and offloading vessels (FPSO) BW Offshore, through its affiliate BW Energy, has announced a re-adjusted operational plan for its offshore Gabon operations after an outcome of drilling in the Dussafu area exceeded initial projections raising even further prevailing optimism of a fast-tracked production program.
Shortly after an independent auditor confirmed BW Offshore management’s estimates for the Hibiscus reserves, the company has brought on the table a new work plan that proposes the moving of the contemplated offshore platform approximately four kilometers to the west of the current position to incorporate the Hibiscus resources.
The company confirmed on Tuesday it is revising the Ruche development plan “including the Hibiscus discovery which will accelerate production growth from the Dussafu license offshore Gabon” in view of the confirmation of the Hibiscus well’s reserves by the independent auditor, Netherland, Sewell & Associates Inc. The auditor puts the Hibiscus reserves at 45.4 million barrels of oil (2P) gross this raising the Dussafu license 1P, 2P and 3P gross 68%, 68% and 69% respectively.
The Hibiscus exploration well, DHIBM-1, was drilled by Borr Drilling to depths of 3,538 meters in water depths of 116 meters while the side-track well was drilled to 1100 meters northwest of the original one, with BW Energy saying both drilling assignments encountered oil on the Hibiscus structure.
Furthermore, Borr Drilling will in the third quarter of next year carry out a drilling campaign for two additional exploration wells after BW Offshore approved this option.
And now BW Energy, which is currently drilling four new production wells on Tortue, which will be followed by one more exploration well under the current sanctioned development program, says the revised ,plan doubles the estimated gross production from the first phase of Ruche from 15,000 bbls/day to 30,000 bbls/day in Dussafu marine permit that is located within the 850 sq km Ruche Exclusive Exploitation Area. The location has at least five discovered oil fields and numerous potential but yet to be drilled locations.
BW Energy, which is a joint venture entity owned 66.67% by BW Offshore and 33.33% by BW Group, currently holds a 81.67% working interest in the Dussafu Marine Permit, while Panoro Energy holds 8.33% and Gabon Oil Company holds 10% working interest.
“These volumes will come in addition to the production from the Tortue field,” the company said in a statement
“Ruche phase 1 will in its revised form consist of four Hibiscus production wells and two Ruche wells, all from the Gamba formation,” it added. The Gamba formation in South Gabon salt basin is similar to the Reconcavo basin in Brazil, an oil rich area that has been explored for oil since 1939. Gabon’s north basin also has been linked to Brazil’s yet other high hydrocarbons’ area of Sergipe/Alagoas.
According to BW Offshore, the second phase of the Ruche development “will develop the additional proven resources through up to seven wells to maintain the production plateau.”
The company said the change in the development plan “will not affect expected timing of first oil from Ruche.”
“Hibiscus is proving to be a discovery of equal quality and magnitude to the Tortue field,” said said Carl K. Arnet, CEO of BW Energy. At the Tortue field in the Ruche area, where BW Offshore initially drilled two horizontal subsea production wells that were tied back to BW Adolo, the company has already announced its investment decision for the second phase or Tortue Phase 2 following a successful appraisal operation on the western flank of the Tortue field.
This week’s announced BW Offshore revised development, Arnet said, “will add significantly to our production capacity and take us above the FPSOs current nameplate of 40,000 bbls/day.”
BW Offshore’s expectation is that the Dussafu license partners “will support the revised development plan launched by BW Energy.” Previously Tullow Oil, which holds a PSC-defined state back-in right of 10% in the permit, had confirmed its intent to exercise this back-in right, that could shrink BW Energy’s stake in the Dussafu permit to 73.5%.