Guyana says Qatar Petroleum farm-in ‘substantially unclear’

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Dr. Mark Bynoe, Director of Guyana’s Department of Energy speaking to reporters at a press conference on July 29, 2019 at the Ministry of the Presidency, Georgetown, Guyana.

Hours after Qatar Petroleum announced that it had entered into an agreement with Total for a share of exploration and production rights in two blocks offshore Guyana, the country’s energy director told reporters the deal remains ‘substantially unclear’ and authorities were still studying the transaction.

“We’ve received a transaction letter from Total which the government is currently studying but until such time that we understand the full implications – because this is not the normal farm-in that we would’ve seen – we’re not about to pronounce thereon,” Director of the Department of Energy, Dr. Mark Bynoe said.

Qatar Petroleum in its statement said under the agreement, which is subject to customary regulatory approvals by the government of Guyana, it will hold 40% of Total’s existing 25% participating interest in the Orinduik block. The other partners in this block are Tullow Oil (the Operator) with a 60% participating interest and Eco Atlantic with a 15% interest.

Also, under the agreement, Qatar Petroleum will hold 40% of Total’s existing 25% participating interest in the neighboring Kanuku block. The other partners in this block are Repsol (the Operator) with a 37.5% participating interest and Tullow Oil with a 37.5% interest.

“What we are finding here is Qatar Petroleum seeking to back into the Total/Guyana agreement, but we can’t go further than that because it is still early days,” Dr. Bynoe said, adding that discussions are ongoing “but at this point in time it is still substantially unclear for us.”

In the announcement on Monday, Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs, Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi, was quoted as thanking the government of Guyana for its collaboration in the farm-in.