Despite the industry-wide downturn, Apache Corp plans to drill a fifth well in Block 58 offshore Suriname, the company said in its third-quarter financial report, as the Houston-based oil major continues to focus on its prime non-U.S. assets.
The company added that it expected “robust Suriname exploration and appraisal programs in 2021.”
Suriname, one of the poorest countries in South America, lies on top of the Guyana-Suriname basin, which has become one of the hottest new exploration spots for the oil industry. A big reason for this was the string of noteworthy discoveries that Exxon and Hess have made in Suriname’s neighbor Guyana, which in turn sparked interest in Suriname.
Earlier this year, Apache Corp and its partner in Suriname Total announced their third oil discovery in Block 58, at the Kwaskwasi-1 well, which, according to Apache, turned out to be the biggest one in the basin so far.
“We are thrilled with the results from the Kwaskwasi-1 exploration well. This is the best well we’ve drilled in the basin to date, with the highest net pay in the best quality reservoirs,” Apache chief executive John J. Christmann said at the time.
“While we have a lot more work to do, a discovery of this quality and magnitude merits a pace of evaluation that enables the option of accelerated first production.”
At the presentation of Apache’s third-quarter results, Christmann said the company had submitted appraisal plans for the first two discoveries—Maka and Sapakara—and intended to present the appraisal plan for Kwaskwasi before this year’s end. Operations are continuing at the fourth drilling site in Block 58, Keskesi, Christmann also said.
Suriname has estimated oil reserves of 92.5 million barrels, according to its state oil company Staatsolie, and some 17.1 million barrels of probable oil reserves. It currently operates just one producing field, Tambaredjo, which pumps around 16,300 bpd. Apache and Total share the rights to Block 58 50/50.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com