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Oman: PetroTel signs agreement for Block 40 offshore Musandam

08 Aug 2011

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US-based international energy firm PetroTel has signed an Exploration and Production Agreement (EPSA) to explore for hydrocarbons in Block 40 offshore Musandam Governorate in the north of the Sultanate.

The 6,120 sq km block is PetroTel’s second concession in the Sultanate, having acquired the adjoining Block 17 under an EPSA concluded with the government in May 2009. Under the terms of the latest agreement,  PetroTel has committed to invest a total of $35 million in a number of activities during the appraisal phases. They include geological and geophysical studies, reprocessing of old seismic, and the acquisition of new 2D seismic. These activities will be followed by a drilling phase.

Any hydrocarbons eventually produced from the block will be processed at a new processing plant currently under development in the Musandam Governorate, said Under-Secretary Nasser bin Khamis al Jashmi. Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production (OOCEP), the upstream subsidiary of the government-owned energy investment firm Oman Oil Company, is currently building the facility at an estimated cost of $600 million. The plant is the centrepiece of an integrated development that will also comprise interlink offshore pipelines, crude storage, export facilities and a gas-fired power plant. The facility is targeted for completion in 2013.

PetroTel is also preparing to drill its first well on its first concession - Block 17 - for which an Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement was signed two years ago. According to Dr Anil Chopra, Chairman of PetroTel Oman Offshore, the company has made 'excellent' headway in assessing the hydrocarbon potential of the 2,378 sq km concession, also located in the Musandam area. 'We have done very detailed geological mapping of Musandam onshore. So far we have found seven prospects onshore. Our teams have spent the first part of this year going to the field and doing very detailed geological work,' the Chairman commented.

Asked about plans for further investment in new acreage offered by the Oman Government, Dr Chopra stated: 'We find Oman very attractive; so will continue to look at Oman.'

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Source: Oman Daily Observer

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