OMV gearing up to drill two North Sea wells

OMV gearing up to drill two North Sea wells

OMV Norge, a subsidiary of Austria’s oil and gas company OMV, has secured a drilling permit from Norway’s authorities for two exploration wells in the Norwegian part of the North Sea. The drilling work is expected to be carried out using a rig managed by the offshore drilling contractor, Odfjell Drilling.

Deepsea Yantai rig; Source: Odfjell Drilling

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) reported on Tuesday that it had granted OMV Norge a drilling permit for the wells 15/2-2 S and 15/2-2 A. The programme for the first well entails the drilling of a wildcat well while the scope of work for the second well covers the drilling of an appraisal well.

Both wells are located in production licence 817, which was awarded on 5 February 2016 and is valid until 5 February 2026. OMV Norge is the operator of the licence with an ownership interest of 50 per cent, while other licensees are Neptune Energy (30 per cent) and Source Energy (20 per cent).

The drilling operations, which will be undertaken by the Deepsea Yaintai rig, are expected to start in the first quarter of 2023. The well 15/2-2 S is expected to be spudded in January 2023 and the well 15/2-2 A is slated to be drilled in March 2023.

The 2019-built Deepsea Yantai rig – formerly known as the Beacon Atlantic –  is capable of harsh environment operation. This rig, which is of a GM4D design, is owned by China’s CIMC and managed by Odfjell Drilling.

OMV Norge hired this semi-submersible rig in September 2022 for drilling operations in the North Sea, which include one firm well “Eirik” in PL 817 in the North Sea, plus one optional well in 2023 or 2024. As explained at the time, the scope of the firm work is estimated to take 60 days and will begin in 1Q 2023.