Norwegian player narrows focus to de-risk exploration hopes

Norwegian offshore exploration company Longboat Energy has split one of its Norwegian North Sea licences as the company moves closer to an acquisition deal with Japan Production Exploration (Japex).

Longboat said that a new group has been formed and an extended work period granted on Norwegian licence PL1049, which had been stratigraphically split to encompass shallow formations.

The new licence group, PL1049S, will focus on two prospects in the Tertiary play, Jasmine and Sjokreps.

Wells will be drilled in the vicinity and existing seismic processed before drilling decisions are taken to de-risk the prospects, the company added.

Longboat’s Norwegian subsidiary, Longboat Energy Norge, will hold a 40% interest in PL1049S, with Norway’s DNO Norge holding another 40% and acting as operator, and Petoro having the remaining 20%.

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Longboat initially held a 25% stake in PL1049, where the deep Cambozola prospect was drilled in 2022. However, the target for further exploration in the split licence PL1049S is the shallower levels.

The Sjokreps prospect has preliminary estimated recoverable volumes of between 20 million and 300 million barrels of oil equivalent, with the main risk being quality of reservoir, while the Jasmine prospect may have estimated recoverable volumes of 10 million to 30 million boe.

The proposed work programme consists of seismic studies, potential seismic reprocessing and integrating results from ongoing and near-term wells targeting the same interval in the area.

Combined, this has the potential to significantly improve the chances of success ahead of making a drilling decision that is planned by February 2025, Longboat said.

Japex boost

Longboat Energy Norge will soon become a joint venture between Longboat Energy and Japex on completion of the Japanese investment into the company that was announced in May.

Japex is set to contribute a cash investment of $50 million to obtain a 49.9% stake in the venture — to be renamed Longboat Japex Norge — and provide $100 million acquisition financing facility.

In anticipation for the new opportunities offered by the deal, Longboat Energy Norge has agreed to purchase minority interests in two satellites to Norway’s Statfjord field.

According to Longboat, Japan’s Inpex Idemitsu Norge is selling a 4.80% unitised interest in Statfjord Ost and a 4.32% unitised interest in Sygna for a cash consideration of almost $13 million.

The two equity stakes are expected to contribute oil and gas production of about 300 barrels of oil equivalent per day net to Longboat Energy Norge.