Location of PEL 94; Source: Global Petroleum

New two-year term opens doors to next phase of Namibian offshore licence and bolsters farm-out efforts

Australia-headquartered oil and gas company Global Petroleum Limited has received the green light to proceed to the first renewal period (FRP) of Walvis Basin licence PEL 94 from the Namibian Ministry of Mines and Energy. The firm expects this to give “a major boost” to its ongoing farm-out campaign.

Location of PEL 94; Source: Global Petroleum

The work commitment for the FRP, which has a duration of two years from September 2023 to September 2025, is to acquire, process and interpret 2,000 km of 3D seismic data carried over from the current initial exploration period (IEP) and to drill a well contingent upon the results of interpretation of the 3D seismic. Global explains that the original well commitment for the FRP – as specified in the Petroleum Agreement for PEL 94 – was firm, rather than contingent.

The Australian player and its partners are obliged to issue a guarantee at the beginning of each main phase of the licence, including the FRP. This is linked to the specified minimum exploration expenditure (MEE), which is the firm work commitment for the FRP, with the precise quantum to be agreed between Global and the ministry. Previously, it was negotiated as a low percentage of the MEE.

Furthermore, the ministry waived the usual requirement to relinquish 50 per cent of the licence area at the end of the IEP, thus, Global and its partners retained all of the prospectivity of the licence on entry to the FRP – notably both of the primary prospects, Marula and Welwitschia Deep, together with the leads which the firm identified in the eastern part of the licence.

According to Global, the grant of the two-year FRP term rather than a further one-year extension to the IEP as originally expected – together with the waiver of the relinquishment requirement – is “a successful outcome,”  which will help with its farm-out process.

Peter Hill, Global Petroleum’s CEO, commented: “We are very pleased to enter the next phase of PEL 94 with the prospectivity intact and the flexibility which a two-year term gives to us and our partners. We would like to convey our thanks to the Ministry of Mines and Energy accordingly.”  

Global holds a 78 per cent participating interest in PEL 94 in Block 2011A in the Walvis Basin, offshore Namibia. This covers 5,798 square kilometres in water depths ranging from 450 metres to 1,550 metres. Namibia’s state oil company, NAMCOR, has a 17 per cent carried interest while a private company, Aloe Investments Two Hundred and Two, has a 5 per cent carried interest in this licence.

The Australian firm underlines that the entire Walvis Basin is “significantly under-explored” even though the eight wells drilled to date -– by Norsk Hydro, Sasol, Ranger, HRT, Repsol, and Tullow and Chariot – have encountered multiple source rocks and reservoir intervals and, in a number of cases, hydrocarbon shows.

Of the wells drilled in the Walvis Basin, the company regards the HRT-operated Wingat-1 well as being the most significant in that liquid hydrocarbons were recovered from the Aptian interval, thus establishing for the first time that a source rock has charged oil into a trap in the Walvis Basin.

Global believes that the drilling in the Orange Basin by Shell and TotalEnergies “strongly suggests” that Namibia has become “a world-class petroleum province,” in terms of scale of likely resources.