Woodside acquires stake in offshore Morocco permit
- Business & Finance
Australia’s oil and gas company Woodside has finalised an agreement with Chariot Oil & Gas to farm-in to the prospective Doukkala Basin offshore north western Morocco.
Under the agreement Woodside acquires an initial 25% participating interest in the Rabat Deep Offshore permits I-VI. The agreement includes an option to acquire an additional 25% and operatorship in these permits for a capped well carry obligation. The agreement is also subject to required government approvals.
These undrilled permits are 10,782 km2 in area and water depths range from 150 to 3600 metres.
Woodside CEO Peter Coleman said the farm-in provided an opportunity to secure a large acreage footprint in an emerging petroleum province that is prospective for both oil and gas.
“Exploration in this basin aligns with our strategy to secure new international growth opportunities in frontier and emerging basins characterised by materiality and quality,” said Coleman.
“This opportunity has been supported by Woodside’s disciplined approach to studying regional petroleum systems, including the Atlantic margins, and is a good fit with our core capabilities in deepwater exploration and production.”
The Rabat Deep permits complement Woodside’s acreage position in the nearby Canary Islands and are a further demonstration of continued efforts to build a global exploration portfolio.
The Rabat Deep Offshore licence area is located 50km offshore in water depths ranging from 150m to 3,500m. On reprocessed and interpreted 2D seismic Chariot has identified a large, 149km2 four-way dip faulted Jurassic carbonate structure, JP-1,with a gross mean prospective resource potential of 618mmbbls. The prospect sits adjacent to source rock modelled to be oil generating and is supported by extensive on-block oil slicks, seeps and seismic Direct Hydrocarbon Indicators. An additional material six leads within the Jurassic fairway have also been identified within the block and any success in Prospect JP-1 would therefore offer significant follow-on exploration potential. These prospective resources have been independently validated by NSAI.
In April this year, Chariot acquired 1,700km2 of 3D seismic data across its Moroccan portfolio. This data is currently being processed and it is anticipated that interpretation will be finished by 1H 2015.
Larry Bottomley, Chariot CEO commented: “We are pleased to have signed this farm-out agreement with Woodside and look forward to working with them in order to identify a priority well location for this giant prospect. Woodside is an experienced basin opener, firmly focused on large scale projects with material production potential. This transaction is an endorsement of Chariot’s view on the opportunity and also our strategy to mitigate risk and introduce levered partners in order to validate and finance the development of our assets. As well as progressing our Moroccan acreage we will be using the funds from this farm-out to expedite our work programmes throughout the portfolio.
The independent audit of the prospective resource potential of the Rabat Deep Offshore Permit demonstrates the giant scale of the opportunity that exists within the Chariot portfolio. Although this acreage in Morocco requires further maturation to deliver additional drillable prospects, all of the play elements of source, reservoir and seal have been demonstrated and success in our exploration campaign would deliver transformational growth. Importantly, any success here will have a significant impact on de-risking the multiple additional leads, indicating significant follow-on potential.