Guyana in play as explorers go after 100 giant prospects targeting 36 billion boe

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Exploration and production (E&P) companies are going after high-impact prospects in effort to capitalise on recent high demand for oil and natural gas, caused by re-organising energy markets. Wood Mackenzie said, in Global Exploration: 5 things to watch in 2023, that 100 giant prospects will be sought next year, targeting 36 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe).

WoodMac does not expect exploration activity to undergo a significant change from the prior year. Selective frontier wells will be drilled in deep and ultra-deepwater, WoodMac said, where exceptional reservoirs give the resource theme an economic advantage.

The locations for these high-impact prospects include Brazil, Guyana, Suriname, Namibia, Mexico, Mozambique and Egypt. Majors are expected to dominate by accounting for 45% of planned deepwater drilling in 2023.

The research intelligence firm expects around half of the added resources to be gas. In this regard, the key basins include those in Cyprus, Egypt, Turkey and Indonesia.

As operators adhere to stakeholder pressure, WoodMac said there will be a careful eye on both lead times and emissions intensity.

“The external energy environment has transformed almost beyond belief from a year ago. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the nearly doubling of commodity prices in 12 months have thrown energy security into the spotlight,” WoodMac said. “Exploration still had a role to play before the supply crisis unfolded but there are now strong fundamentals to support more exploration to help reduce import reliance on Russia.

In Guyana, the delayed Wei-1 exploration well is a high-impact prospect that could be spud in January.

ExxonMobil is expected to wrap up a 25-well drill campaign in the first half of the year in the Stabroek Block. The major had sought environmental approval for additional drill campaigns at Canje, Kaieteur and Stabroek, and is expected to assess the cumulative environmental impacts of those ventures before approval is considered.

Tullow Oil is also expected to drill one exploration well at the Orinduik Block.


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