ExxonMobil will invest $5 billion in Guyana for an oil production and extraction venture in the Liza area of the Stabroek offshore drilling block with first profits expected by 2020, according to a report by the Jamaica Observer.
Exxon’s local affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL) have applied for a license to extract fossil fuels in the South American nation, according to Jeff Simon, Exxon’s representative for the country.
The affiliate has also contracted a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel from SMB offshore with a production capacity of 100,000-120,000 barrels per day at a $40-per-barrel cost. The FPSO will be able to separate water and gas from oil as seventeen total wells are drilled in the underwater fossil fuel reservoir estimated to be carrying between 0.8 to 1.4 billion barrels of recoverable oil.
“The way we install a lot of the stuff on sea floor… is with some specialized equipment. There are not a lot of these kinds of vessels around the world,” Simon said, adding that the performance of new Liza wells “has given us some additional confidence… to go forward in the development.”
Guyanese authorities gave Exxon the go ahead to begin exploration in 1999, but the U.S.-based company did not begin activity until 2014 because it lost its partner in the venture due to the risk involved. Still, there is only a one in five chance that the exploration will be successful, according to Simon.
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“I think the key things here are that that facility out there and all that equipment is really high-tech, highly instrumented and it is run basically with 60 to 80 people out on that ship and that’s two ships of people out there, so it’s not a people intensive operation for the actual oil production and operations,” Simon said, assuring that Exxon will be utilizing local resources to supply food and living supplies for those working on the FPSO.
By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com
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Zainab Calcuttawala is an American journalist based in Morocco. She completed her undergraduate coursework at the University of Texas at Austin (Hook’em) and reports on…