Petronas confirms awarded two Mexico deepwater blocks

PETALING JAYA: Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) last Friday confirmed that it has been awarded deepwater Block 4 and Block 5 in the Gulf of Mexico’s Salina Basin, following Mexico’s first ever auction of its deepwater exploration areas.

Block 4 has been awarded to a 50:50 partnership between PC Carigali Mexico Operations, S.A. de C.V., a wholly owned subsidiary, and Sierra Oil & Gas S. de R.L de C.V.

Block 5, on the other hand, was awarded to a consortium led by Murphy Sur, S. de R.L. de C.V. (30%), with partners Petronas Mexico (23.34%), Ophir Energy (23.33%) and Sierra Offshore Exploration (23.33%).

Petronas Mexico will be the operator of Block 4, an area of about 2,600 sq km in water depths of between 800 metres and 1,600 metres. The initial exploration period for the block is four years where Petronas Mexico and Sierra will concentrate on seismic data acquisition and processing.

Block 5, which covers an area of about 2,600 square km in water depths of 700 metres to 1,100 metres, will be operated by Murphy Sur, with an initial exploration period of also four years including a work program commitment of one well.

“Petronas’ entry into Mexico’s deep water arena provides a strategic fit for our business growth, focusing on upstream exploration opportunities and portfolio with potential for long-term value,” said Petronas’ Vice President of Exploration, Upstream, Emeliana Rice-Oxley said in a statement.

Meanwhile in a separate statement, Petronas said it has produced its first drop of LNG from the Kanowit gas field, offshore Sarawak on Dec 5, 2016.

Petronas’ acting vice president LNG assets, development & production Adnan Zainal Abidin said the first drop of LNG from PFLNG Satu has realised the technological aspirations of the company to tap hydrocarbons and produce LNG close to the source.

With a processing capacity of 1.2 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), operating at water depths between 70 metres to 200 metres deep, PFLNG Satu is expected to lift its first cargo and achieve commercial operations in the first quarter of 2017.