ExxonMobil and its partners Hess and Nexen are turning their attention to the Tilapia prospect, located some 3.4 miles (5.5 kilometers) west of the Longtail-1 well in the prolific 6.6 million acres Stabroek Block offshore Guyana. Industry analyst Wood Mackenzie believes a discovery at Tilapia could see a combined development project being rolled out by the US oil major utilizing a 220,000 bpd FPSO.
The company announced its 10th discovery in the South American country on December 3, at the Pluma-1 well, which is located 42 miles (67 kilometres) southeast of Liza. Wood Mackenzie estimates the discovery holds 300 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe) of recoverable resources, while the August 2018 Hammerhead discovery added another estimated 700 mmboe. “With many prospects left to chase at the Stabroek block and a success rate of 83%, the project will only get bigger,” the analyst said.
“The Tilapia prospect near Longtail is next to drill,” said Luiz Hayum, research analyst with Wood Mackenzie’s Latin America team. “It marks a shift from the previous plan to drill the Aimara prospect and likely aims to add volumes to the Longtail-Turbot development hub. If successful, Longtail, Turbot, Pluma and Tilapia could be jointly developed with a 220,000 barrel per day FPSO in an eventual Phase 4.”
The giant, low breakeven discoveries are key to the partners, he said. “At peak, the project accounts for a third of Hess’ future production. For ExxonMobil, Guyana strengthens its growing deepwater portfolio, while for CNOOC it addresses efforts to offset domestic declines.”
ExxonMobil affiliate Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited is operator and holds 45 percent interest in the Stabroek Block. Hess Guyana Exploration Limited holds 30 per cent interest and CNOOC Nexen Petroleum Guyana Limited holds 25 per cent interest.