Wednesday 22nd August 2018
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OMV says it will know later this year whether to proceed with further appraisal drilling in the Manaia structure south-west of the Maari oil field.
The firm has been undertaking a series of well workovers and other upgrades to maintain production at the field about 70 kilometres off the Taranaki coast.
It had been looking at tapping the shallower Moki formation in the Manaia structure next year, but opted to defer that work due to technical and commercial considerations, partner Cue Energy Resources said last month.
Maari is the country’s biggest liquids producer and has delivered more than 36 million barrels of oil since production began in 2009. It is owned by OMV, Horizon Oil and Cue and delivered just over 2.9 million barrels last year, according to government data.
Manaia lies about seven kilometres from the Maari platform and delivers oil to it from the deeper Mangahewa formation through an extended reach well drilled in 2009.
The Manaia-2A well, drilled in 2013, drilled through both the Moki and Mangahewa formations and also tested the deeper Farewell formation. No hydrocarbons were found in that formation but the extent of the oil-bearing sands in the Moki formation was a surprise.
Gabriel Selischi, OMV’s senior vice president for Australasia, yesterday said the firm had been assessing both the Manaia-Moki and Manaia-Mangahewa reservoirs for further production.
Sub-surface modelling was required for both and the decision was taken to prioritise Manaia-Mangahewa for development.
“The Manaia-Mangahewa work is expected to be complete in the December quarter. We will know then if we will delay or defer if necessary,” Selischi said in an email.
OMV, which is in the process of taking over Shell’s operations in New Zealand, has applied for marine consents for a programme of drilling in Taranaki waters during the next four years. It plans nine exploration wells and three appraisal wells across six permits, including Maari.
Selischi said the Environmental Protection Authority consent process for that work won’t be affected by the choices the venture makes at Manaia.
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