OVL discovers more oil at offshore Farsi block in Iran

Vol 10, PW 12 (05 Oct 06) Exploration & Production

ONGC Videsh has discovered significant quantities of oil at its third offshore exploration well at the Farsi block in Iran using the Kedarnath jack-up rig from Great Offshore.

Spud on 27th August this year, Kedarnath reached TD of 2320 metres on 24th September. OVL has since begun testing the well.

When confirmed, this will be the third successive well at Farsi to have uncovered oil, raising hopes of a significant discovery. It is heavy oil, reveals a source.

Logging will take another three to four days and this will be followed by testing. Its believed OVL is trying to perforate a formation at 2200 metres depth for testing where the discovery was made.

This should take another week, adds our source. OVL wants to see if the oil will flow to surface on its own.

After testing is complete, OVL will move Kedarnath to the location of her fourth exploration well, most likely in the days ahead. PETROWATCH learns that OVLs second exploration well at the Farsi block, which was spud on 5th July, also flowed oil.

TD for the second well was likewise around 2300m and drilling went on for over a month. OVL was unable to test the second well due to the unavailability of critical testing equipment.

Contacted by this report, OVL declines to disclose why the testing equipment was unavailable. OVL's first well drilled by Kedarnath at Farsi on 27th April 2006 also discovered oil.

In December 2005, Kedarnath set sail for Iran on what was initially thought to be a seven-month programme to drill four firm wells. As expected, three wells (drilled to date) have proved to be oil bearing and OVL believes the fourth one will be gas bearing.

OVL is paying around $68,000 per day for Kedarnath for her work in Iran. ONGC originally hired Kedarnath at a day rate of $46,000 per day subject to a rate rise to cover additional operational costs in Iran and the cost of extra crew and manpower.