Malaysian oil and gas company Petronas has spudded its first well – Sloanea-1 – offshore Suriname at Block 52 where it has farm-down 50% of its interest to US oil major ExxonMobil.
Denmark-based drilling rig operator Maersk Drilling is carrying out the campaign using the semi-submersible Maersk Developer rig. The contract is valued at approximately US$20.4 million including integrated drilling services, mobilization, and demobilization fees. The Maersk Developer is a DSS-21 column-stabilized, dynamically positioned semi-submersible rig, able to operate in water depths up to 10,000ft.
Block 52 is located north of the coast of Paramaribo, Suriname’s capital city, and is situated in the prospective Guyana-Suriname basin where several major hydrocarbon discoveries were made recently. Block 52 covers an area of 4,749 km² with water depths ranging from 50 to 1,100 meters.
Petronas will be looking to emulate the success US oil exploration company Apache has had on neighbouring Block 58 where it has made three discoveries so far offshore the South American country.
In addition to Block 52, Petronas also holds a 100 per cent participating interest and operatorship for Block 48, and a 30 per cent non-operated participating interest in Block 53.
Trinidad and Tobago-based Ramps Logistics was hired by Petronas to provide drilling services for the Sloanea-1 campaign. The drilling services will be provided primarily out of Trinidad, from which the supply vessels will move all pipe, casing, drilling fluid, cement, and other tools to the rig offshore Suriname. Ramps will supply shorebase support in Trinidad and provide logistic services such as clearance and permits for all vessels, customs brokerage, immigration and other personnel logistics, as well as a range of 3rd party services including fuelling, cargo carrying unit (CCU)’s and waste disposal in both Trinidad and Suriname.
Petronas, as the operator of Block 52 holds 50 percent equity, while ExxonMobil holds the remaining 50 percent.