Santos basin

Brazilian oil and gas regulator Agência Nacional do Petróleo, Gás Natural e Biocombustíveis (ANP) has approved Karoon Gas Australia’s revised appraisal plan (PAD) for its five offshore Santos Basin blocks.

The blocks S-M-1037, S-M-1101, S-M-1102, S-M-1165 and S-M-1166 are 65% owned by the company, while the remaining 35% equity interest is held by Pacific Exploration and Production.

According to the company, the revised PAD specifies the minimum firm, as well as contingent work programme commitments that are needed to be concluded to satisfy the joint venture’s (JV) obligations under the concession agreement.

Approval will enable the JV to finalise and prepare for the work programme in the Santos Basin Brazil.

Karoon hopes to begin the Echidna light oil discovery drilling during 2016.

The firm work programme commitments are expected to be completed by 31 December 2018.

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"Karoon is now in a position to move forward and contract a drilling rig to commence the next iteration of the work programme during 2016."

Once the continued appraisal drill is successful at Echidna, the company expects to install an early production system (EPS) on the field.

Comprising two or more production wells, an EPS would provide an important analogue for understanding Kangaroo and other similar oil accumulations in the blocks.

After completing exploration and appraisal, the company plans to scale back the additional resource to a centrally located floating production, storage and off-loading vessel.

Karoon Gas Australia managing director Robert Hosking said: "The approval of the revised PAD is significant for the company.

"Karoon is now in a position to move forward and contract a drilling rig to commence the next iteration of the work programme during 2016."

Image: Location of Santos Basin. Photo: courtesy of Mmm.