Development drilling for giant Liza Phase 2 project set to begin next month

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The Noble Tom Madden drillship

Development drilling for the 220,000 barrels per day Liza Phase 2 project offshore Guyana will begin next month as US oil major ExxonMobil ramps up its operations at the 6.6 million acres Stabroek Block where more than 8 billion barrels of oil equivalent have so far been found.

After the Noble Tom Madden drillship completes the evaluation of the Uaru discovery, the vessel will move to development drilling for Liza Phase 2.

The hull for the FPSO to be used in the second phase of oil production – the Liza Unity – arrived in Singapore on January 13. The vessel, being built by SBM Offshore, will have double the capacity of the Liza Destiny FPSO which started oil production offshore Guyana in December.

“Construction of all 13 deck modules is currently underway. Meanwhile, in Guyana, installation of subsea flow lines and equipment is underway and development drilling is expected to begin next month,” Greg Hill, President and Chief Operating Officer at Hess Corporation told investors on Wednesday.

Hess has a 30% stake at the Stabroek Block with ExxonMobil as operator holding 45% interest and CNOOC holding 25%.

When compared to the 17 wells drilled for Liza Phase 1, approximately 35-40 wells will be drilled at two subsea drill centers for Phase 2 consisting of a combination of producers and injectors to support production of oil, injection of water and reinjection of associated gas.

“We continue to forecast first oil by mid-2022,” Hill assured.

Meanwhile, production at the 120,000 barrels per day Liza Phase 1 development project continues to ramp up with daily output now approaching 75,000 barrels per day. Production is expected to reach full capacity in coming months.