Muscat: Having just announced modest cutbacks in its planned investments in its Oman operations during 2020 in response to the sharp drop in international oil prices, Swedish energy firm Tethys Oil says it is pressing ahead nonetheless with its ambitions to drill its first exploration well in its wholly-owned Block 49 located in the southwest of the Sultanate.
The Stockholm-based company, which is presently the largest player in Oman’s upstream Oil & Gas sector by acreage, is preparing to accelerate efforts to unlock the hydrocarbon potential of the 15,439 sq km license.
“After two years of seismic work, including reprocessing of older seismic data, and processing
and interpretation of seismic data from a new campaign, Tethys Oil is ready to spud an exploration well in 2020,” said the company in its newly released Annual Report for 2019.
For Tethys Oil, which acquired the concession in 2017 as a 100 per cent operator-owned license, Block 49 represents an opportunity to showcase its capabilities as an independent upstream player with the resources and wherewithal to go it alone in Oil & Gas exploration and development.
The company’s presence in Oman’s hydrocarbon sector goes back nearly a decade. It holds a 30 per cent non-operated interest in Blocks 3&4, where CC Energy Development SAL (Oman branch) is the operator. More recently, it acquired a 20 per cent interest in the Exploration and
Production licence covering Block 56 onshore Oman, operated by a subsidiary to Medco Energi.
Block 49, as Tethys Oil first wholly operated license in the Sultanate, also holds special significance for Oman’s Oil & Gas industry because it is home to Dauka-1, the first well ever drilled in Oman in 1955. Eight other wells were drilled by subsequent operators within the block, some of which encountered oil shows.
In the two years since it acquired the Block, Tethys Oil reprocessed 2D seismic data acquired by previous operators, as well as launched its own 2D and 3D seismic campaigns. It has since zeroed in on an area called Thameen.
“After processing and completion of the first phase of the seismic interpretation in second half of 2019, a drillable prospect was identified in the north eastern part of the Block. The prospect, known as Thameen (“Precious”) has been further delineated and the drilling of a well is being planned to a depth of close to 4,000 metres to evaluate three potential reservoir targets,” the company said, noting that it is actively looking for a suitable rig in this regard.