Drilling in ‘super plays’ like Guyana will intensify this year – WoodMac

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Globally, deepwater will remain an exclusive sector with few operators, and oil majors will continue to dominate, accounting for 45% of planned deepwater drilling in 2022, particularly in ‘super plays’ like Guyana, Suriname and Brazil.

According to new insight from Wood Mackenzie, National Oil Companies (NOC) will also feature in many of the key deepwater basins.

“Keep a special watch-out for Petrobras. The Brazilian national champion is roaring back with plans for eight wildcats targeting various plays in Brazil,” WoodMac said.

According to the U.K based consultancy group, nearly half of all planned exploration offshore in 2022 will be in the deepwater.

“The geography will continue to narrow but expect to see some old favourites remain – US GoM, Brazil and Mexico. Drilling in the more recently discovered super plays in Guyana and Suriname will continue, although perhaps with lower success,” WoodMac said. “There are also big upcoming deepwater gas wells in Australia, Israel, Cyprus and Colombia, as the importance of gas in the de-carbonising story for the longer term continues to rise.”

Analysts have said large volumes of gas at Stabroek Block offshore Guyana, where over 10 billion barrels of oil equivalent have already been found, could see the country becoming an export hub.

“The total projected reserves are estimated to be double that and around 20 percent of this will be gas. But we’ve even heard from our sources that the actual amount of gas is likely to be much more than what has been revealed so far,” said Arthur Deakin, Co-Director of Energy Practice at Americas Market Intelligence. “So, honestly, I think that the gas is going to be a tremendous monetization opportunity in Guyana, and we see it becoming a gas exporting hub for CARICOM.”

Drilling operations offshore Guyana continue in earnest with a series of exploration, appraisal and development campaigns underway at Stabroek Block, the largest acreage. The country’s second FPSO – the Liza Unity – arrived in October and is gearing up to begin oil production early this year.


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