UK player mulls over more drilling ops in Dutch North Sea

UK-headquartered oil and gas company Kistos is considering embarking on further drilling activities to boost output from its assets in the Dutch sector of the North Sea while evaluating the results of its recent drilling campaign, which was carried out by one of Valaris’ jack-up rigs.

Valaris 123 jack-up rig; Source: Keppel

In response to the variable productivity of the reservoir at the Q10 area’s P15 platform, Kistos is pursuing regular interventions to maximise production with a programme of side-tracks and stimulations being implemented. To this end, the Valaris 123 rig arrived at the field last year and undertook a work programme that was expected to be completed during 1Q 2023.

As previously explained, the rig’s scope of work covered a sidetrack of the A01 well in the Slochteren formation; stimulation of the A04 well in the clastics; and installation of velocity strings on A05 and A06 wells. In addition, the firm confirmed that further clastics wells were being considered over the following 18 months.

In an update on Wednesday, 29 March 2023, Kistos revealed that the Valaris 123 rig recently departed from the Q10-A gas field, after safely completing its work programme. According to the UK player, the results of the campaign were mixed due to mechanical issues arising from utilising the existing well stock rather than reservoir performance issues.

Therefore, the Kistos technical team, with the assistance of external consultants, is undertaking a detailed evaluation of the results and future production enhancement options. The company explains that future work programmes, which are being considered, could include the drilling of further Zechstein clastics wells in 2024 in combination with development drilling at the Orion oil field.

Andrew Austin, Kistos’ Executive Chairman, commented: “I would like to congratulate our team in the Netherlands on the safe completion under difficult weather conditions of the operational work programme. The process of fully evaluating the results of the campaign is ongoing, and will inform the planning of future work programmes, including the potential operational synergies with the Orion oil field development.”

Q10-A gas field; Source: Kistos
Q10-A gas field; Source: Kistos

Moreover, the engineering design work has now been completed to enable the installation of two more risers on the platform, which would allow it to host additional wells. Kistos underscores that the Orion field continues to progress through the concept select phase, which the firm is undertaking with the assistance of Rockflow Resources.

With a 60 per cent interest in the exploration and production licenses in the Netherlands, Kistos acts as the operator of these assets while its joint venture partner, Energie Beheer Nederland (EBN), holds the remaining 40 per cent working interest. The Q10-A gas field was discovered through an appraisal/development well drilled in 2015 into the Q10-A structure, which lies 20 km off the Netherlands, straddling the Q07/Q10a production licences.

The FID was taken in January 2018, and commercial gas production was achieved in February 2019, from a development comprising a remotely operated, unmanned platform with six well slots, located in a shallow 21-metre water environment. The gas is exported through a 42-kilometre pipeline to the P15-D platform where it is processed for onward transportation to shore.

Regarding Kistos’ other recent activities, it is worth noting that the UK player decided not to make a firm offer for a compatriot oil and gas firm, Serica Energy, last year as it was unable to iron out the details for a proposed combination.

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