TODAY.AZ / Business

SOCAR, Equinor to start drilling at Karabakh oilfield

20 November 2019 [15:33] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

By Rasana Gasimova

Azerbaijan’s State Oil Company (SOCAR) and Norway's Equinor will start drilling an appraisal well in the Karabakh field with estimated oil reserves of 100 million tons.

This was stated during the meeting between SOCAR’s President Rovnag Abdullayev and Norwegian delegation led by Torgrim Reitan, Executive Vice President for International Development and Production of Equinor ASA on November 19.

After drilling of the appraisal well, it is planned to install a stationary unit and start production from the well. The construction of the main stand is already completed by SOCAR's Bos Shelf Company. Once the concept of the upper part of the platform is defined, the construction will begin.

Spheres of cooperation between the companies were also discussed at the meeting. The parties exchanged views on the current state and future plans for the development of the Karabakh field, as well as the development of the Azeri-Chirag-Deepwater Gunashli fields.

Torgrim Reitan praised safety and transparency standards in Reitan Equinor's joint projects with SOCAR, noting that projects implemented in Azerbaijan are important for the company. The parties stressed the need for more rapid implementation of the "Karabakh" project and discussed further steps in this direction.

As part of another joint project by SOCAR and Equinor, Ashrafi - Dan Ulduzu - Aypara, SOCAR’s Caspian Geo Company has been conducting seismic exploration since September 2019. 2D-3D seismic survey is being conducted in the area. About 80 percent of 3D exploration has already been completed and processing and analyzing of the collected data will begin in December.

Equinor ASA (formerly Statoil) has been operating in Azerbaijan since 1992. The company is a shareholder of the Production Sharing Agreement (7.27 percent) on Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli project the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (8.71 percent) oil pipeline.

Note that SOCAR and Equinor signed a Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) type contract in Baku on May 31, 2018 to explore and develop the block of prospective structures Dan -Ulduzu-Ashrafi-Aypara and Risk Service Contract to develop the Karabakh field.

The Karabakh oil and gas field, discovered in 2000, is located 130 kilometers to the east of Baku. The sea depth in the field varies in the range of 250-450 meters.

The recoverable reserves of the Karabakh field are estimated at 16 million tons of oil and 28 billion cubic meters of gas. The sea depth in the area of the field is 180 meters.

About 60 percent of work on the new offshore platform for the Karabakh field has been completed. The first product from the Karabakh field is expected in 2020-2021.


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