UK’s Tullow Oil hits oil in new Kenyan well

UK-based independent oil and gas explorer Tullow Oil said Wednesday it has encountered roughly 75 meters of net oil pay in two zones at the Emekuya-1 well, located in the Block 13T of northern Kenya, Kallanish Energy reports.

The well, located near Tullow’s Etom-2 well, was drilled to a depth of 1,356 meters and penetrated reservoir quality Miocene sandstones, “which correlate to those seen in the successful Etom-2 well,” the firm said, in a statement.

With a focus in African and South American upstream assets, Tullow said it’s very encouraged by the quality and regional extent of the reservoir, in the northern part of the South Lokichar Basin. The company will move the rig to drill an up-dip appraisal well on the Greater Etom structure.

“We now look forward to the remainder of the Kenya exploration and appraisal campaign in support of the ongoing work to prepare this important asset for full field development,” added Angus Mccoss, the company’s exploration director.

Tullow operates Blocks 13T and 10BB and owns 50% of the project, partnering with Africa Oil Corp. and Maersk Oil, as both own 25% of the project. Its total net reserves and resources in East Africa are estimated at 639.6 million barrels of oil-equivalent (MMBOE).

"The discovery not only adds more recoverable resources to the current portfolio but, along with Etom-2 and Erut-1 (wells), establishes the 'northern triangle' part of the South Lokichar Basin as an independent production hub," said Sasikanth Chilukuru, an analyst at Morgan Stanley.

Tullow and its partners, along with the government of Kenya, are planning the construction of a crude oil exports pipeline. Studies on the pipeline design, financing and ownership are yet to be carried out.  

In February, Tullow said its West Africa working interest oil production would average between 78,000-85,000 barrels per day (BPD) in 2017. Its European working interest gas production is estimated at between 6,000-7,000 barrels of oil-equivalent per day (BOE/d).