GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd has awarded a £1.4 million joint study to Xodus Group and Atkins for Concept Select work for the Austen (formerly Jacqui) field in the Central North Sea, with a further option to proceed into the Concept Definition phase.
The studies will identify development and export options for the field. Aberdeen-based Xodus and Atkins will start work immediately with completion scheduled for Q1 2014. The contract follows the successful drilling of an appraisal well by GDF SUEZ E&P UK in 2012 and was bid against competition from other UK and European contractors. It is the start of several workscopes currently being planned by GDF SUEZ E&P UK to support its Central North Sea development portfolio.
GDF SUEZ E&P UK acquired the licence containing the Austen discovery, which is located in block 30/13b in the East Central Graben area, as part of the 26th UK Offshore Licensing Round in 2011. The field comprises of a gas condensate discovery and two oil discoveries and has additional upside potential from several unappraised compartments.
Jean-Claude Perdigues, Managing Director of GDF SUEZ E&P UK said: “This contract marks a significant milestone in our progress since we acquired the licence in 2011. The Central North Sea is one of our three core development areas and Austen is an important part of our plans as we move towards our goal of being a successful development operator in the region.”
GDF SUEZ E&P UK signed an agreement with E.ON UK E&P Limited on 29 May 2013 under which E.ON E&P will acquire a 25% share in the Austen project. GDF SUEZ E&P UK will retain a 75% interest and operatorship of the field. The transaction is subject to approval by DECC (Department of Energy and Climate Change).