Exxon’s newly minted Prosperity FPSO for first annual inspection ahead of first oil

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The first inspection of the Prosperity floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel by Guyana’s offshore operations unit has been scheduled for May/June 2023, Guyana’s Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill said on April 19. The activity is part of the annual maritime safety inspection for FPSOs coordinated by the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD), of which the offshore unit forms part.

Prosperity arrived in early April.

Edghill explained that this mechanism ensures that the FPSOs operate in a safe and compliant manner and is in keeping with MARAD’s mandate to coordinate maritime activities in the South American country. 

The FPSOs in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana – Liza Destiny and Unity – are already undergoing annual inspection and currently produce a combined 380,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd). Once operational, Prosperity is expected to increase total production to approximately 600,000 bpd.

The Prosperity’s crude production capacity of 220,000 bpd and oil storage volume of approximately 2 million barrels make it a crucial component of Exxon’s expansion plans. 

The Offshore Unit at MARAD is responsible for facilitating the issuance of permits to operate within Guyana’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ), certificates of clearance for crude lifting, the publication of notices to mariners, and navigation warnings.

“Any vessel seeking to operate within Guyana’s upstream, midstream or downstream requires a permit to do so, and these permits are valid for one year or less,” Edghill said. “Certificates of clearance for crude lifting from [floating production, storage and offloading vessels] FPSOs are issued after careful examination of the endorsed and other documents to ensure their compliance with MARAD’s requirements.”

Guyana’s Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill

He said the government formed the unit in 2021, shortly after assuming office, to support the needs of Guyana’s offshore industries, making sure they operate safely and efficiently. 

Edghill said there are 2,513 ships that required pilotage in Guyana in 2021, a number that increased by more than 300 in 2022. The offshore unit at MARAD, operational 24/7, currently has three dedicated employees, a coordinator and two clerical staff, and they are supported by three inspectors and four surveyors.

Specific to Exxon’s exploration and development plans, 2025 is expected to be a peak year for the company’s offshore operations, once its Kaieteur, Canje and Stabroek Block exploration campaigns get underway, and the ONE GUYANA FPSO arrives.

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