A new oil field with a potential to produce up to 5,350 barrels of oil per day has been discovered in the North Sea.
The hydrocarbon reservoir trapped in paleocene sandstones covers two neighbouring areas of UK Central North Sea for which BP and GDF Suez E&P UK have separate exploration licenses.
“This is an encouraging exploration discovery in a part of the Central North Sea that needs additional volumes of hydrocarbons to open up development options for several stranded discoveries,” said Ruud Zoon, Managing Director of GDF SUEZ E&P UK.
“The discovery is our third successful well this year and demonstrates a continuing commitment by GDF SUEZ to an active exploration and appraisal drilling programme on the UK Continental Shelf.”
GDF SUEZ, operating block 30/1f refers to the new field as Marconi while BP, which is in charge of block 30/1f, uses the designation Vorlich.
The test well was drilled by GDF SUEZ E&P UK as operator, with the Transocean Galaxy II jack-up rig under a joint well agreement between the two licence groups.
“As BP marks its 50th year in the North Sea and as the industry looks to maximise economic recovery from the basin, increasing exploration activity and finding new ways to collaborate will be critical to realising remaining potential,” said Trevor Garlick, Regional President of BP North Sea “This discovery is a great example of both.”
Business and Energy Minister Matthew Hancock said: “We are determined to have set the right fiscal and regulatory regimes to make sure we can get the maximum possible economic extraction of oil and gas from the North Sea.”
“This discovery shows exactly what can be achieved in the North Sea if companies work together to maximise the considerable potential of remaining oil and gas reserves.”
GDF SUEZ started exploration of the UK Continental Shelf in 1997 and has since become a significant player in the oil and gas exploration industry. The company controls assets in the Central and Southern North Sea, and in an area west of Shetland, comprising more than 50 licences, 20 as operator.
The company is currently developing the Cygnus gas field, the largest offshore gas field discovered in the southern North Sea in the last 25 years.
BP, which has recently been awarded exploration licenses for 14 blocks in the North Sea has pledged to invest some £10bn to boost hydrocarbon exploration in theregion. Over £7bn will be spent in the next five years.