PGNiG Upstream Norway, a Norwegian unit of the Polish state-owned company PGNiG, on Friday started drilling an exploration well on the Shrek prospect located in the Norwegian Sea, for the first time in the role of the operator.
Before starting the drilling operations on the Shrek well, which is located in license area PL838, PGNiG obtained a drilling permit and safety consent to use the Deepsea Nordkapp rig to drill the well from Norwegian authorities.
It is the first exploration well in this license area, located in the vicinity of the Skarv oil and gas field, in which PGNiG holds a 12% interest.
“The main objective of our operations in Norway is to scale up our own production of gas in the region. Now we also have the opportunity to develop our competences and expertise as an operator, which proves the trust our Norwegian partners place in PGNiG,” said Piotr Woźniak, President of the PGNiG S.A. Management Board.
“The Norwegian Continental Shelf is a rather challenging area, but we are very well prepared to handle this task.
The sea at the location of the well is 358 meters deep. The Shrek prospect is located at a depth of approximately 2,300 meters from the seabed.
The company said on Friday that the estimated duration of the drilling work depends on the results that will be obtained. It will take approximately 45 days if hydrocarbons are discovered, in which case the company also plans to drill a sidetrack, collect the cores, and carry out detailed geophysical measurements.
The well is drilled using Deepsea Nordkapp, a 6th generation semi-submersible rig.
“Preparatory procedures for the drilling of an offshore well were extremely complex and different from what we do when drilling onshore wells, as they require much more effort in terms of planning itself. Ensuring the safety of work involving risks that are not found on land, such as heavy storms, plays a vital role, too. Drilling operations at the open sea, often carried out in extreme weather conditions far from the shore, are definitely more challenging,” said Piotr Woźniak.
PGNiG Upstream Norway holds a 40% interest in license PL838, while the partners, Aker BP and Lime Petroleum, hold a 30% interest each. License PL838 was awarded to the companies in February 2016 in the APA 2015 licensing round.
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