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Maha Energy seeks extension for Oman oil exploration deal

6 Aug 2023 By GULAM ALI KHAN

Muscat – Swedish energy firm Maha Energy has requested an extension to the initial phase of its exploration and production sharing agreement (EPSA) with the Ministry of Energy and Minerals for Block 70 onshore Oman, which is set to expire in late October.

Maha Energy is the operator of Block 70 with a 65% working interest, with Mafraq Energy holding the remaining 35%.

Maha Energy announced the results of the initial short-term production test on Block 70 in Oman (initial phase).

‘All eight production wells drilled in the 2022/2023 drilling programme were tested for the short-term, and five produced oil to surface at an initial estimated average rate of 300 barrels of oil per day per well, while three wells had to be suspended after producing water and gas but before producing any oil,’ the company said in a statement.

‘Even though more than 4,000 barrels of heavy, high viscosity oil (between 11-13 degrees API) were produced, filling all tank capacity available at Block 70, oil offloading has not yet initiated,’ Maha Energy said.

The company added that it is now scaling up chemical treatment of the produced oil, based on those products that provided the best results in the lab, to reduce viscosity and enhance flowability.

The company said during the second quarter of 2023, the minimum work obligations of the EPSA have been fully concluded as planned. As Maha Energy approaches the end of the initial phase in late October 2023, different extension scenarios were evaluated by the company and discussed with Omani authorities.

‘Hence, driven by Maha Energy’s commitment to conclude testing effectively and to ensure an appropriate and robust request for a potential declaration of commerciality, the company has requested the extension of the initial phase of the EPSA to the Ministry of Energy and Minerals,’ Maha Energy said.

During the extended initial phase, Maha Energy intends to implement activities necessary to support any decision regarding Block 70’s declaration of commerciality, such as: (i) running detailed simulations of the long-term behaviour of the reservoir and wells at Block 70; (ii) restarting the cold production of wells and troubleshooting for the maximum possible sustained rates contingent on reaching specifications; and (iii) preparing a detailed plan for enhanced oil recovery (EOR) such as steam, waterflooding, or other production enhancement methods to be performed during a possible second stage of the extended initial phase.

Block 70 is an onshore block that includes the shallow undeveloped Mafraq heavy oil field. The block is located in the middle of the prolific oil producing Ghaba Salt Basin in the central part of Oman.

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