Greek oil company Energean will drill an exploration well in the Karish North prospect, offshore Israel, with a planned spud date before end-March 2019.
In an announcement on Monday, Energean said its board of directors had approved the operation. This means Energean will exercise the first of seven optional wells included in the Stena Drilling contract.
To remind, Stena and Energean in January signed a contract for deployment of the Stena Forth drillship “or such substitute as may be agreed by the parties” to drill three development wells in Q1 2019, at Energeran’s the Karish and Tanin gas fields.
The Karish North exploration prospect is located within Energean’s Karish lease and will be drilled immediately prior to the three well development of the adjacent Karish Main field, the company’s flagship gas development project.
Gross drilling costs are expected to be between US$15-25 million, Energean said.. The Independent Competent Persons Report for the Karish North prospect estimates gross recoverable unrisked prospective resources of 33.5 BCM (1.2 Tcf, or circa 200 MMboe) of natural gas and 14 MMbbls of light oil. The Karish lease is 100% owned and operated by Energean Israel Ltd, which is 70% owned by Energean.
Near field prospects
The decision to drill the Karish North well is consistent with Energean’s exploration strategy to target near field prospects where potential discoveries can be quickly and economically monetized, Energean said on Monday.
The Karish FPSO is being built with gas production and processing capacity of 8 BCMA. Energean Israel has forward sold 4.2 BCMA of currently discovered gas volumes, leaving circa 4 BCMA of excess FPSO capacity available for the potential tie-back of future discoveries.
The option to drill additional exploration wells at the end of the development well campaign remains open. Options for a second well include the Karish East prospect in the Karish lease and Prospect 4 in the Block 12 exploration license, which Energean secured at the end of 2017, following the First Israeli Offshore Bid Round.
Mathios Rigas, CEO Energean Oil & Gas, said: “We view Karish North as an attractive near-field exploration opportunity offshore Israel that could deliver significant upside alongside our existing Karish development, for which we have already signed 12 gas contracts and secured 4.2 BCMA of supply over an average period of 16 years. The goal of the exploration work is to identify further eeasy-to-commercializeresources in the region.”