Update: Petrobras, SBM Offshore sign Mero 2 FPSO deal

The article has been updated by a statement from Petrobras, released a few hours after the initial SBM Offshore announcement

Petrobras has signed a letter of intent with SBM Offshore for a 22.5-year lease and operation of the FPSO Mero 2, to be deployed at the Mero field in the Santos Basin offshore Brazil, 180 kilometers offshore Rio de Janeiro.

SBM Offshore said on Tuesday it would design and construct the FPSO Mero 2 using its standardized hull Fast4Ward program. SBM has said that two out of three Fast4Ward hulls currently under construction have now formally been allocated to projects. Just last week, a shipyard in China launched SBM’s first Fast4Ward hull, destined for Exxon’s Liza field, offshore Guyana.

The Mero 2 FPSO will be designed to produce 180,000 barrels of oil per day. It will have a water injection capacity of 250,000 barrels per day, associated gas treatment capacity of 12 million standard cubic meters per day and a minimum storage capacity of 1.4 million barrels of crude oil.

The weight of the FPSO topside modules will be around 33,000 tons. The FPSO will be spread moored in approximately 2,000 meters water depth. Delivery of the FPSO is expected in 2022.

Bruno Chabas, CEO of SBM Offshore commented: “The signing of this Letter of Intent demonstrates again that SBM Offshore has started a new era of growth. Not only does this award represent the Company’s re-entry in Brazil, one of the most important markets for the Company with one of our key customers, it also re-confirms the competitiveness of our Fast4WardTM concept while expanding its geographical reach.”

The Libra block, where the Mero field is located, is under Production Sharing Agreement to a consortium comprised of Petrobras, as the Operator, with 40 percent, Shell with 20 percent, Total with 20 percent, CNODC with 10 percent and CNOOC Limited with 10 percent interest.

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SBM Offshore's Fast4Ward hulls
SBM Offshore’s Fast4Ward hulls / Image by SBM Offshore

Update: Tuesday, June 11, 1:30 P.M. CET

Following SBM Offshore announcement on the Mero 2 LoI on Tuesday morning (CET), Petrobras a few hours later issued a statement according to which a contract had been signed.

Offshore Energy Today has reached out to SBM Offshore seeking clarification on whether the agreement signed was a firm contract or a letter of intent as intially reported by SBM Offshore. We will update the article if we receive a response.

Meanwhile, Petrobras said the following:” Petrobras, the Libra Consortium operator, signed a contract on Monday (10/6) with the SBM Group to charter and operate the second definitive production system of Mero field, located in the northwestern area of the Libra block.”

Petrobras said the FPSO would link up to 16 wells with a capacity to process up to 180,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd) and 12 million cubic meters/day of gas. Production is expected to start in 2022. The platform will join the FPSO Pioneiro de Libra, dedicated to early production systems, in operation since November 2017; and the FPSO Guanabara, the first unit planned for the definitive production system of Mero field, with production start-up scheduled for 2021.

“With this signature, we completed the contracting of the planned production arrangement for Mero field in the 2019-2023 Business and Management Plan. By the end of the plan period, we will have two definitive production systems under operation, which could add up to 360,000 barrels of oil per day to the production capacity operated by Petrobras. With the information now obtained in ongoing tests, we confirmed the high production potential of Mero field, which has an estimated reserve of 3-4 billion barrels,” said Carlos Alberto Pereira de Oliveira, Petrobras’ Upstream Executive Officer.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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