A consortium of companies led by the American Anadarko Petroleum Corporation have signed an amendment to their production sharing agreement with Sonatrach, the national oil company of Algeria, which will enable the group to resume exploration in the country.
The amendment was signed Robert J. Allison, Jr., chairman and CEO of Anadarko, and by Chakib Khelil, Algeria’s minister of energy and mines and chairman and CEO of Sonatrach.
Anadarko's partners in consortium are Lasmo Oil (Algeria) Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Eni S.p.A., and Maersk Olie, Algeriet AS, each holding a 25 percent interest. Anadarko, with a 50 percent interest, is the operator.
The exploration phase of Anadarko's original production sharing sgreement in Algeria ended in 1998. As part of that initial exploration program, Anadarko drilled 20 exploratory wells, with a 70 percent success rate.
This new agreement will enable Anadarko and its partners to resume exploration in these three blocks in areas outside of the exploitation license boundaries.
Under the terms of the three-phase exploration program, Anadarko and its partners will spend a minimum of $55 million. During the first five years, 400 square kilometers of 3-D seismic and 1,100 kilometers of 2-D seismic will be shot and processed; the results of previous seismic surveys will be reprocessed; and six exploration wells will be drilled.
Seismic acquisition is expected to begin this year, and exploration drilling will likely begin next year. Should the sixth and seventh year options be exercised, an additional exploration well will be drilled in each year.
Anadarko, Lasmo and Maersk will finance 100 percent of the exploration investment. Sonatrach will participate 51 percent in the development and exploitation phases of any discoveries.
The Anadarko/Sonatrach association has discovered nearly 2.8 billion barrels of oil since the Production Sharing Agreement was signed in 1989. Anadarko drilled its first well in Algeria in 1991 and made its first oil discovery in 1993.
Production facilities are currently under construction that will allow the association to increase gross daily production capacity from 75,000 barrels to 500,000 barrels by mid-2003.
Houston-based Anadarko Petroleum Corporation is one of the world's largest independent oil companies, with proved reserves of more than 2 billion barrels of oil equivalent.
Domestically, it has operations in Texas, Louisiana, the Mid-Continent and Rocky Mountain regions, Alaska and in the shallow and deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
Anadarko is the most active driller in North America and internationally Anadarko is active in Canada, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, West Africa, Guatemala, Venezuela, Argentina, Brazil, Georgia, the North Atlantic and Australia. – (Albawaba-MEBG)
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