Photo: Romgaz headquarters; Source: Romgaz

Romgaz, ExxonMobil sign exclusivity deal for Black Sea block buy

Romanian oil and gas company Romgaz has signed an exclusivity agreement with ExxonMobil’s subsidiary in Romania for the acquisition of a Black Sea offshore block.

Romgaz said on Friday that the exclusivity agreement grants it an exclusivity right for a period of four months for the acquisition of all shares of ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Romania Limited. According to the company, the exclusivity period ends on 15 October 2021.

The oil major’s Romanian subsidiary holds a 50 per cent stake in the XIX Neptun Deep Block in the Black Sea. The other 50 per cent stake in the block is held by OMV Petrom.

The block covers an area of approximately 7,500 square kilometres in water depths ranging from 100-1,700 metres.

To remind, Romgaz filed a takeover offer for ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Romania Limited back in March.

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In April, Romania’s OMV Petrom stated that it would become the operator of the XIX Neptun Deep Block if Romgaz’s offer to buy ExxonMobil’s subsidiary.

It is worth noting that ExxonMobil has been present in Romania’s upstream sector since November 2008, when it acquired an interest in the deepwater Neptun Deep block in the Black Sea.

Since the acquisition, the company acquired more than 3,000 square kilometres of 3D seismic data over Neptun Deep Block. In 2012, Domino-1, the first deepwater well in Romania located 170 kilometres offshore in 1,000 metres of water depth, confirmed the presence of natural gas. Regardless of the find, the block was never developed.

Location of XIX Neptune Deep in the Black Sea; Source: OMV Petrom

OMV Petrom, the partner in the XIX Neptun Deep Block, stated in one of its reports that the Black Sea currently ensures some 10 per cent of Romania’s gas demand. It is worth noting that the current fields have been producing for decades and are now approaching the end of their life.

OMV Petrom claimed that recent exploration activities indicated new reserves that could be brought to the surface to create value for the country.