2023: Major wells to watch in South America’s hottest basin

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With high-impact drilling set to make a rebound in 2023, there are several high-impact wells in the Guyana-Suriname Basin to watch out for.

Rystad Energy classifies high-impact wells through a combination of factors, including the size of the prospect, whether they would unlock new hydrocarbon resources in frontier areas or emerging basins, and their significance to the operator.


CGX Energy’s Wei-1

The Wei-1 exploration well will be located approximately 14 kilometres northwest of the Kawa-1 exploration well in the Corentyne block, approximately 200 kilometres offshore from Georgetown. Wei-1 is to be drilled in water depths of approximately 1,912 feet (583 metres) to an anticipated total depth of 20,500 feet (6,248 metres) and will target Campanian and Santonian aged stacked channels in a western channel complex in the northern section of the Corentyne block.

The Noble Discoverer will arrive in Guyana by January 18 to kickstart drilling activities.

Tullow Oil’s Amatuk-1

A 2018 Competent Persons Report (CPR) by Gustavson Associates had said that the Amatuk lead is above a channel infill of Upper Cretaceous age, that runs from the southwest of the acreage to the north where it plunges onto the continental shelf. It had estimated the lead would be about 68 square kilometres (km2), with 228.9 million oil-equivalent barrels and a 19.2% probability of success (POS).

In the 2020 updated CPR, the estimate for Amatuk increased to 267.3 million oil-equivalent barrels and a 28.8% POS.

ExxonMobil’s Tarpon-1 

Drilling activities are being undertaken by the Stena DrillMax at Tarpon, located approximately 122.3 nautical miles (226.5 kilometers) offshore, covering an area of 0.29 square nautical miles (1 square kilometer).


Kosmos Energy’s Walker

The Walker prospect is a carbonate play, located in Suriname’s Block 42 adjacent to Exxon’s Turbot discovery in the southeast portion of Guyana’s Stabroek Block. Little information exists on Walker but according to reports, it bears similarities to Exxon’s Ranger-1 discovery.


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