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7 biggest Oil & Gas discoveries and awards from February 2020



Despite an overall industry slow down exacerbated by Coronavirus fears in recent weeks, there was still significant Oil & Gas activity in February with new discoveries made and new projects approved globally.

Find out all the latest Oil & Gas developments in Fircroft's monthly news roundup
(Image via Shutterstock)

Read on to find out all the leading Oil & Gas stories you may have missed this month, in Fircroft’s February round up of new discoveries and awards - including the biggest oil find in 15 years, a nation’s first venture into offshore exploration and a deal signed by one of Fircroft’s own JV partners. 

The Jebel Ali reservoir is the biggest gas find in 15 years
(Image via Middle East Monitor)

Dubai and Abu Dhabi make world’s largest natural gas discovery

Reports from the beginning of February announced what could be the world’s largest natural gas discovery since 2005.

The Jebel Ali reservoir, located between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, is thought to contain 80 trillion cubic feet of gas resources - enough to meet the UAE’s entire gas demand for nearly three decades, according to analysts a Wood Mackenzie. 

The news was broken on Twitter by Abu Dhabi’s crown prince, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and UAE prime minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. State owned energy giant, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (ADNOC) will jointly develop the reservoir with distributor the Dubai Supply Authority.

This is the first time that ADNOC has explored for gas in Dubai, with the nation primarily reliant on imports, a third of which comes from neighbouring Qatar. The discovery will be a major benefit to the country’s aim to be self-sufficient in its gas supply by 2030. 

More than 10 wells were drilled to make the discovery, which is now considered to be the fourth largest gas field in the Middle East. Both standard and unconventional drilling techniques are being planned for the field’s development.

T7 - a JV partner with Fircroft - have secured a major contract with Petronus in the Bayan field
(Image via T7)

T7 secure Petronas project

T7 Global Bhd - a Malaysia-based service provider and longstanding JV partner to Fircroft - have secured a major project with Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd for the provision of a mobile offshore production unit (MOPU) on Phase 2 of the Bayan redevelopment Project.

The Bayan field is located in sub-block 4Q-21 of Balingian Province, offshore Bintulu, approximately 80km North West of Bintulu, Sarawak, and 30km south of the West Acis Field - one of four marginal Oil & Gas fields that form the Balai Cluster. 

T7’s subsidiary, Tanjung Offshore Services Sdn Bhd, will complete EPCIC works on a 2 year contract, as well as lease, operation and maintenance on the MOPU for 10 years, which will be bridge linked to the existing BYR-A riser platform with a new 12.7km pipeline between the BYDP-C and BYR-A facilities. 

It is intended to have a processing capacity of around 100 million cubic feet of gas per day. 

Read the full story on

Eni made a new oil discovery on the Saasken exploration prospect
(Image via Eni)

Eni makes Saasken discovery offshore Mexico

Eni revealed on 17th February a new oil discovery on the Saasken exploration prospect in Block 10 of the Sureste Basin offshore Mexico.

It’s estimated that the find could contain between 200 and 300 million barrels of oil in place. Eni conducted an intensive data collection on the Saasken-1 NFW well, which indicated production capacity of more than 10,000 barrels of oil per day.

The well is located approximately 40 miles off the coast and was drilled to a total depth of 12,565 feet. The discovery will be appraised by the Block 10 joint venture - comprised of Eni (65%), Lukoil (20%) and Capricorn (15%) - in order to start studies for a commercial development.

Byron Energy made a discovery larger than pre-drill estimates in the Gulf of Mexico
(Image via Byron)

Byron Energy makes greater than expected oil find in Gulf of Mexico

Byron Energy’s discovery in the South Marsh Island Block 71 F4 well delivered more than pre-drill expectations, while also being drilled and evaluated at 25% below budget.

Drilled at a total depth of 8,130 feet in D5 Upper Sand, the well hit a total of 91 feet measured depth of net hydrocarbon pay (87 feet true vertical thickness). They also reported a further 11 feet MD (10 feet true vertical thickness) of hydrocarbons in the J1 sand.

“The SM71 F4 well has more than met our pre-drill expectations,” said Byron CEO Maynard Smith.

“Once again, Byron’s RTM seismic data has proven to be an extremely accurate tool for finding oil and gas in the South Marsh Island 71 area. The short cycle time to first production will be of great value to us in our SM58 development program.”

The firm’s Logging While Drilling (LWD) program indicated a mostly likely high gas content oil, though the final hydrocarbon type will not be determined until after the well is placed into production.

Lebanon is drilling the country's first offshore exploration well in a hope to aid their economy
(Image via Times of Israel)

Lebanon starts drilling first offshore exploration well

A consortium of supermajors including Total, Eni and Novatek are working on Lebanon’s first offshore Oil & Gas exploration project.

The Tungsten Explorer drillship docked in Beirut on the 25th February, to begin drilling on 27th February in block 4, located 30km off the coast.

“Total is pleased to start exploration operations on block 4, which is the first deepwater exploration well in Lebanon,” said Total’s Lebanon Chief Ricardo Darre.

Drilling is due to last two months, starting at 1.5km below sea level and exploring targets 2.5 km below the sea bed.

The consortium has also acquired drilling rights for exploration of the nearby Block 9 and is scheduled to begin drilling in the coming months - though this is dependent on political factors in the region.

It’s hoped that a successful Oil & Gas find will provide hope for the country’s struggling economy.

The central Oman Block 12 will be explored by Total and PTTEP
(Image via Oman)

Total and PTTEP to explore onshore block in Oman

Total E&P and PTT Exploration and Production (PTTEP) will explore Oman’s Block 12 using geological and geophysical studies, 3D seismic surveys and undertake exploration wells for the development of non-associated gas.

The 9,442 square kilometre block is located in central Oman and is thought to have a high gas potential. The joint venture has signed a three year exploration and production sharing agreement for the area with the Ministry of Oil.

“The signing of this EPSA for Block 12 strategically strengthens PTTEP exploration investment and presence in Oman which is a high petroleum potential area in the Middle East with a favourable investment climate,” said PTTEP President and CEO Phongsthorn Thavisin.

“The deal will also widen opportunity for PTTEP to further expand investment in the region for long term growth and to partner with a prudent operator that has extensive experience in Oman.”

ADNOC and Petrofac signed 2 contracts worth a total of $1.65 billion
(Image via ADNOC)

ADNOC awards 2 EPCs to Petrofac, worth $1.65 billion

Petrofac will undertake engineering, procurement, construction, transportation, offshore installation and commissioning of ADNOC’s Dalma Gas Development Project.

The ultra-sour gas field is expected to produce more than 1.5 billion cubic feet of gas per day, fulfilling more than 20% of the UAE’s gas requirements.

The first contract package is for gas processing facilities on Arzanah island, including inlet facilities with gas processing and compression units, power generation units, utilities and other associated infrastructure. The 33-month lump-sum contract is valued at $1.065 billion.

The second contract will see Petrofac leading a Joint Venture with SapuraKencana HL Sdn. Bhd. Abu Dhabi. This 30-month lump sum contract has a scope of work covering three new well-head platforms, removal and replacement of an existing topside, new pipelines, subsea umbilicals, composite and fibre optic cables. The package is valued at $591 million.

“We are fully committed to supporting continued and sustainable investment in Abu Dhabi’s oil and gas industry through our strategic focus on maximising local delivery, and are pleased that our approach will generate substantial In-Country Value for the local economy,” said George Salibi, COO - Engineering & Construction of ADNOC.

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7 biggest Oil & Gas discoveries and awards from February 2020 - Time to read 7 min
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