Murphy Oil Abandons Azurite Field. BW Offshore Eyeing New FDPSO Deal

PA Resources today announced that production from the Azurite field, offshore Congo, has stopped as planned. 

Field abandonment operations have kicked off. The final crude oil lifting for the joint venture took place on 1 November.  The Azurite development is located in about 4,500 feet of water, in the Mer Profonde Sud (MPS) block, in territorial waters of the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville).  Murphy Oil is the operator of the field with a 50 per cent share. PA Resources owns 35 per cent and SNPC 15 per cent.

The operator  has given notice of termination to the owner of the Azurite FDPSO, BW Offshore, effective 30 April 2014, and the basis under which a contractual termination fee and related costs will be reimbursed to the vessel owner is in the process of finalisation.

The unit has been under contract with Murphy since 2009, and, under the original agreement, was supposed to stay at the location until at least 2016, with an option for Murphy to extend until 2024.

In August this year BW Offshore CEO Carl Krogh Arnet said that the company would be fully compensated to the end of the firm contract  and that BW Offshore has already started looking for redeployment opportunities for the Azurite FDPSO unit.

When asked about the Azurite redeployment timing, he said that more information from Murphy itself was needed, but added that 2016 should be the year to look at.

Arnet explained that the exact date for the production stop is still not known. “There will be a time lag between the stop of production and the actual release of the unit. It’s early to say how this will pan out.”

”We have enough time to find another prospect,” he added.

The Azurite FDPSO is the industry’s first Floating Production Storage and Offloading facility with drilling capability.

The FDPSO has storage capacity of 1.3 million barrels of oil and the capability to process 40,000 barrels of oil per day and is being used for drilling and completing the production and injection wells.

Offshore Energy Today Staff, November 06, 2013