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Fri, Mar

GHANA DISCOVERS MORE OIL

Business & Economy

Ghana has once again discovered large deposits of oil ready for commercial exploitation. The country first found oil in commercial quantities under the Kufuor-led New Patriotic Party government.

Ghana has once again discovered large deposits of oil ready for commercial exploitation. The country first found oil in commercial quantities under the Kufuor-led New Patriotic Party government.

Aker Energy ASA, a Norwegian company, yesterday announced that based on existing sub-surface data from seismic wells drilled and an analysis of the Pecan-4A well result, the existing discoveries contain gross contingent resources of an estimated 450-550 million barrels of oil equivalent.

The company estimates that with the next two appraisal wells to be drilled, the total volumes to be included in the Plan of Development (POD) could increase to one billion barrels.

There are identified multiple well targets to be drilled besides, as part of a greater area development after submission of the POD.

NDC frustrates Hess

Hess Corporation of the United States was originally awarded the contract to develop the oil block by the Kufuor government in 2006. It identified the Pecan discovery in 2012.

But both the Mills and Mahama governments could not help the company to develop the block. Between 2012 and 2016 Hess sought, unsuccessfully, to appraise the field and agree terms with the government on a feasible plan of development for the discovery. Its initial assessment indicated resources of 230 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Frustrated, Hess eventually found more lucrative business to do with ExxonMobil in Guyana and decided to sell its interest to Aker Energy. Incidentally, Aker had been kicked out by the NDC government in 2010.

Aker delivers

Following discussions with Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) last year, Aker announced its acquisition of Hess’s interest in the Deepwater Tano/Cape Three Points (DWT/CTP) licence.

Aker and its partner, working closely with the Petroleum Commission and GNPC, quickly undertook preparations for an expansive drilling programme, with Pecan 4A the first of three wells planned.

The expansive drilling programme, with more advanced technology, has turned out to be very successful. Aker Energy believes what it has found could add up to one billion barrels, three times the maximum estimate Hess believed the block contained.

Production in 2020

We are pleased to announce the well results, confirming our understanding of the area, as well as the resource base and upside potential in the DWT/CTP block,” Jan Arve Haugan, chief executive of Aker Energy, said yesterday.

Based on these results, we will optimise the Plan of Development (POD) for the Pecan field to be submitted by the end of March 2019.

According to Energy Minister John Peter Amewu, “Multiple government agencies, including the Petroleum Commission, GNPC and the Ministries of Energy and Finance, have worked closely with the DWT/CTP partners to achieve this positive result.”

He has given the assurance that Ghana will continue to collaborate with and support Aker Energy and its partners “as we jointly work to deliver first oil as quickly as possible and ensure significant value is retained in Ghana for the benefit of our people”.

It is expected that production will begin in 2020. Currently, the country produces 200,000 barrels of oil daily. The Aker discovery is expected to yield an additional 200,000 barrels a day in 2021, putting Ghana on the brink of doubling its earnings from oil exports.

 

 

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