Guyana driving subsea tree demand as number of oil fields targeted for development increase

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The base-case subsea tree demand for the 2021-24 period is now forecast at approximately 1050 units representing an upward revision of 60 units compared to a March outlook by consultancy group Westwood Energy.

“The increase is due to ExxonMobil’s commitment to developing its Yellowtail, Hammerhead and Turbot discoveries in the Stabroek license offshore Guyana,” Westwood said in a recently updated Global Subsea Tree Tracker report.

Westwood had said it anticipates a significant uptick in activity over Q4 2020 driven by formal awards for ExxonMobil’s Payara (Guyana) and ConocoPhillips’ Tommeliten Alpha (Norway) fields, both of which are confirmed.

Payara, ExxonMobil’s 3rd development at the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana, has made way for the award of the largest subsea contract in the oil and gas industry since 2014. The project was awarded to TechnipFMC and includes 41 enhanced vertical deepwater trees, six flexible risers and ten manifolds along with controls and tie-in equipment.

US$9 billion Payara Development is largest investment in Guyana’s history

The Payara Development will see approximately 35-45 wells being drilled from 10 subsea drill centres, consisting of a combination of producers and injectors to support oil production. The project will utilize onshore infrastructure which include shorebases, warehouses, storage and pipe yards, fabrication facilities, fuel supply facilities, and waste management facilities in Guyana.

Meanwhile, ExxonMobil has said it plans to submit a development plan to authorities in the South American country for its fourth project offshore, by the end of this year. “We recently announced additional exploration successes at our Yellowtail and Redtail prospects and are confident that this area will progress as our fourth major development on the block,” Senior Vice President of Upstream, Neil Chapman, told investors in March.

The Yellowtail area contains oily fluids similar to those of the Liza discovery which the company made back in 2015.

“We plan to submit a development plan to the Government of Guyana before the end of this year,” Chapman said. “Looking out even further, we would anticipate having two additional FPSOs online by 2027, with a total capacity of more than one million barrels of oil per day.”

Westwood said subsea tree demand outlook for the remainder of 2021 is forecast to total 178 units, of which 67 units (37%) are classified as “Firm”, 78 units (44%) as “Probable” and 33 units (19%) classified as “Possible” based on its assessment of subsurface, commercial, and geopolitical factors.

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