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ExxonMobil said on Thursday that it had found high-quality, oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs offshore Guyana in South America, close to its Liza discovery in the area.
Exxon drilled at the Payara discovery—its second oil discovery on the Stabroek Block and about 10 miles northwest of the Liza discovery—targeting similarly aged reservoirs that were proven successful at the Liza discovery.
“This important discovery further establishes the area as a significant exploration province,” Steve Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Company, said in the company statement.
Exxon has also drilled at its Liza discovery, with appraisal drilling at Liza-3 identifying an additional high-quality, deeper reservoir directly below the Liza field, estimated to contain between 100-150 million barrels of oil equivalent.
John Hess, CEO of Hess Corporation, Exxon’s partner in the venture, said:
“While further appraisal is required, we believe that the resources recently discovered are significant and will be accretive to the more than 1 billion barrels of oil equivalent already confirmed at the Liza discovery.”
Last year, Exxon successfully drilled Liza-2 after the completion of the Liza-1 well in 2015.
At the end of 2016, Exxon said it had awarded key contracts for floating production, storage and an offloading vessel at Liza, thus moving closer toward first production at the Liza field, which has a potential recoverable resource estimate of more than 1 billion oil-equivalent barrels.
In early December, Exxon filed with the Guyana Ministry of Natural Resources an application for a production license and the initial development plan for the Liza field. Final investment decision on the project is expected this year.
ExxonMobil affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited is operator and holds 45 percent in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration Ltd. owns 30 percent and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana Limited has a 25-percent interest in the block.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.