VAALCO Energy Inc. has announced a re-sequencing update to its drilling and workover program offshore Gabon, Central Africa, in the Etame Marin block.
As previously reported in a press release dated 16 September 2015 announcing the strong results from the initial North Tchibala field development well, the company planned to mobilise the Transocean Constellation II jackup rig to the Avouma/South Tchibala field to conduct workover operations to replace electrical submersible pumps (ESP's) on three existing development wells, two of which are currently off production.
The North Tchibala 1-H well, the first well drilled by VAALCO to the Dentale formation, continues to produce at a rate of approximately 3000 gross bpd (approximately 750 bpd net revenue interest to VAALCO) without artificial lift. Subsequent to completion of the well, adverse sea state conditions at the location of the SEENT Platform prevented VAALCO from moving the rig to the Avouma/South Tchibala Platform. Rather than wait for a change in sea state conditions and incur the expense of idle / standby rig time, and coupled with the continued strong performance of the first Gabon offshore Dentale development well, VAALCO and its partners jointly agreed to re-sequence the drilling and workover program and proceed with the drilling and completion of the North Tchibala 2-H well, designed to develop oil production from the deeper Dentale D18-19 formation.
Drilling operations are currently proceeding on time and on budget with the expectation that the well will be drilled to a depth of approximately 16 000 ft and will be finalised in November. Following completion of the current operation, and on the assumption of satisfactory sea state conditions, the rig will be mobilised to the Avouma/South Tchibala Platform to conduct the aforementioned workover operations. Historic weather patterns suggest that conditions will be improving in the timeframe in which the rig will next require mobilisation.
Additionally, the annual five-day shutdown of the Etame Marin block to allow the owner of the FPSO to perform maintenance operations that would have occurred this fall has been postponed until the first quarter of 2016.
Edited from press release by Angharad Lock