More exploration for oil
The Ministry of Mines and Energy last month awarded an exploration license to Serica Energy PLC a British independent oil and gas exploration and production company with major licence interests offshore West Africa and reserves and exploration assets in the North Sea and the Atlantic Margin off Ireland.
The company was formally awarded the rights to a 17,400 square kilometre licence in the Central Luderitz Basin on 19 December last year and in March the company announced that it had reached an agreement with BP under which BP would earn a 30% interest in the licence by meeting the full cost of a 4,150 square kilometre 3D seismic acquisition programme which started in May and will go on up to August. The survey is said to cost the company US$40 million.
Speaking in an interview with the Economist this week Chairman and Interim Chief Executive Officer of Serica Energy, Tony Craven Walker said offshore Namibia remains one of the few under-explored regions world wide with a very large resources potential.
The survey which is currently taking place in the basin is claimed to be the biggest offshore seismic survey in its course. Though the seismic survey is under way, drilling is set to only take place in 2013 as it will take 3 to 6 months for the data that is being gathered, to be analysed and only after the results of the survey will the decision to drill or not be made. If the results of the survey are positive the company will spend US$80 million dollars for the drilling of the oil well.
Walker also said that the project will not only boost the Namibian economy but will also create employment for a large number of people. “ We will have an office in Windhoek, we will need people to operate the boats, we will need helicopter pilots and people to work in construction”.
BP owns 30% of the licence and will own a further 37.5% when they meet the full cost of drilling and testing the exploration well to the Barremian level.
Serica Energy Namibia which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Serica owns 55% of the licence, Exploration (Luderitz Basin) Limited which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BP owns 30%, the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia owns 10% and Indigenous Energy (Pty) Limited owns 5% of the licence.
Serica Energy was formed in 2004 and since then has drilled 19 wells in locations as diverse as the UK offshore, the Atlantic margin offshore Ireland, offshore Indonesia and offshore Vietnam. The company is listed on both the Toronto Stock Exchange and the London AIM under the ticker SQZ.