Even as the Department of Energy accelerates preparations for first oil next month, it is also gearing itself for a rapid exploration programme by several oil majors. This was revealed yesterday by the Director of the Department, Dr. Mark Bynoe.

At a press conference, Dr. Bynoe said that the programme will include further exploration of the potential of held acreage, appraisal of the commerciality of discovered resources for future developments, and the drilling of development wells to support efficient ramp-up and sustained production.

As it relates to the Stabroek Block, Dr. Bynoe indicated that the Stena Caron is currently drilling Ranger-2 while the Noble Tom Madden is working on the Tripletail-1. Dr. Bynoe said that Exxon recently concluded a contract for a fourth rig, the Noble Don Taylor, which will arrive on November 15, 2019, to ramp up the exploration drilling programme. In addition to the rig operations, the Director said that Exxon is continuing with 4D baseline acquisition for the Southeast area of its block.

On the Orinduik Block, which is operated by Tullow Oil, Dr. Bynoe said that the company is still working toward drilling campaign starting in the first half of 2020.

Turning his attention to the Canje Block, Dr. Bynoe said that the parties, Mid-Atlantic and JHI Associates, are to finalize the registry of the Canje first renewal Prospecting and Production License (PPL). They are entering the first three-year renewal period with a well commitment and 20 percent relinquishment of the block which is operated by ExxonMobil. It is possible that the drilling work for this block would be done with those rigs being used by Exxon for the Stabroek Block.

On the Kaieteur Block, Dr. Bynoe said that the initial four-year period ends in the first quarter of 2021, with the option to enter the first renewal period (lasting three years) with well commitment and relinquishment. This block is also operated by ExxonMobil.

As for the CGX Resources and Frontera operated blocks, Dr. Bynoe said that one can expect a 3D Seismic shoot in the northern part of the Corentyne block which is adjacent to the boundary of the Stabroek block. The first well will be spud in 2020 with another planned right after for the Demerara block.


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