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French Total has expanded its presence in the Gulf of Mexico by closing a farm-in agreement with Chevron for the development of seven prospects covering 16 blocks in the deepwater section of the gulf. The French company said the prospects it will develop are located in the Wilcox play in the central Gulf of Mexico, next to the Anchor discovery, and in the Norphlet area, close to the Appomattox discovery.
Total will take stakes of between 25 and 40 percent in the prospects, to add to its already existing interests in producing fields in the GOM: a 17-percent stake in the Tahiti field, whose operator is again Chevron, and a 33.33 percent interest in the Chinook field, operated by Brazil’s Petrobras.
The French major also holds 40 percent in the North Platte field, operated by Cobalt Energy. Separately, Total won six offshore exploration licenses for the Gulf of Mexico in the latest lease sale that took place in August, the president of Total Exploration & Production, Arnaud Breuillac said in the press release on the new partnership. This means that to date, after the acquisition of Maersk Oil, which also has assets in the Gulf, Total has access to more than 160 exploration licenses off the U.S. Gulf coast.
Onshore, the French company bought all of Chesapeake Energy’s assets in the Barnett shale, and holds a 25-percent stake in Chesapeake’s and EnerVest joint venture in the Utica play.
Total has managed to weather the effects of the 2014 price crash more quickly than some peers, not least thanks to massive layoffs, and is now on an expansion path, which involves not just new oil and gas projects spanning from the U.S. to Iran and Qatar, but also in renewables as the company shifts toward a cleaner energy direction, following global energy trends.
Total’s daily crude oil and condensate production last year averaged 1.27 million barrels, and refining throughput stood at 1.965 million barrels daily.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.