Empyrean contracts COSL for seismic survey off China

London-listed oil and gas company Empyrean Energy has begun a 3D seismic survey on its 100 percent owned Block 29/11, offshore China.

Block 29/11 is approximately 1,800 square kilometers and is situated approximately 200 kilometers off Hong Kong in water depths ranging from 340-600 meters.

Empyrean has the right to conduct exploration under a Geophysical Survey Agreement and a subsequent right to enter a pre-negotiated Production Sharing Contract with the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC).

During the Geophysical Survey Agreement period, Empyrean will have a 100 percent working interest in the block. Once the company signs a Production Sharing Contract with CNOOC, the Chinese company will have a back-in right to a 51 percent interest in the license in the event of a commercial discovery.

The company said on Thursday that it contracted China Oilfield Services Limited (COSL) to complete the survey. The survey will cover an area of approximately 580 square kilometers and would take approximately 40 days to shoot.

The data acquired will then be processed and interpreted, which will take around 90 days.

Empyrean added that the survey would cover several leads and prospects that have previously been identified on 2D seismic by the Ameco Corporation, now part of BP, and CNOOC. These include Jade and Topaz, two prospects which the company believes would benefit from the current 3D seismic program.

Furthermore, the survey will also include the acquisition of 3D seismic over recent discoveries immediately to the west of Block 29/11.

Tom Kelly, Empyrean CEO, said: “We are very excited to make further progress in collaboration with CNOOC on Block 29/11. The block has two material prospects, Jade and Topaz, mapped on good quality 2D seismic data and the 3D seismic survey which is now underway will hopefully enable Empyrean to mature these exciting prospects for drilling.”

In related news, Empyrean recently entered into a sale and purchase agreement to conditionally acquire up to a 20 percent shareholding in West Natuna Exploration (WNEL) from Conrad Petroleum.