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Exxon Guyana Well Hits 120,000 Bpd Milestone

The Liza-1 well in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana is pumping oil at a rate of 120,000 barrels per day, Exxon has announced, in a belated achievement of its target for the well.

Argus quoted Exxon Guyana president Alistair Routledge as saying, "We are disappointed by the number of equipment issues experienced and that, because of these issues and Covid-19, commissioning of the gas injection system took longer than originally projected." It added the 120,000-bpd milestone was supposed to be reached a year ago.

Exxon, together with its partner in the Stabroek Block, Hess Corp, has made 18 discoveries there in less than five years, with a combined potential for producing up to 750,000 bpd of crude. Liza Phase 1, the first discovery, is already producing, and Liza Phase 2 should start producing in 2022, Exxon said, at a rate of 220,000 bpd.

The company also recently made the final investment decision on a third find—the Payara field, which should pump up to 220,000 bpd beginning in 2024.

Guyana is a priority area of development for Exxon, the company said in a recent update on its plans for the future, even though it has not all been smooth sailing. Earlier this year, Exxon was forced to cut production at the Liza-1 well due to the risk of excessive gas flaring. Then, drilling in another offshore block in the area yielded disappointing results: the Tanager-1 well, in the Kaieteur Block, was declared non-commercial as a standalone development.

Exxon is also drilling offshore neighboring Suriname and has already made a discovery there, too. The hydrocarbons were discovered in the Sloanea-1 exploration well on Block 52, which is operated by Malaysia's Petronas with a 50-percent stake. Exxon holds the remaining 50-percent interest in the block. The companies are currently evaluating the potential of the discovery.

Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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