Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil, has started oil production at its new Erha North phase 2 project in offshore Nigeria.
The deepwater subsea development is located 60 miles offshore Nigeria in 3,300ft of water and four miles north of the Erha field.
Estimated to develop an additional 165 million barrels from the currently producing Erha North field, the project includes seven wells from three drill centres.
The wells are tied-back to the existing Erha North floating production, storage and offloading vessel.
According to the US company Exxon Mobil, peak production from the expansion is currently estimated at 65,000 barrels of oil per day at present, with maximised total production from the field predicted to be approximately 90,000 barrels daily.
ExxonMobil Development Company president Neil Duffin said: "Executing successful projects such as Erha North Phase 2 ahead of schedule and under budget results from ExxonMobil’s disciplined project management approach and expertise.
"We are able to create additional shareholder value by optimising existing infrastructure, which reduces capital spending requirements and improves capital efficiency."
Duffin noted that the startup happened ahead of schedule and $400m under budget due to the performance from Nigerian contractors.
This also included subsea equipment, facilities, and offshore installation.
Duffin added: "These contracts are bringing direct and indirect benefits to the Nigerian economy through project spending and employment, consistent with project objectives."
In 2015, the company hopes to increase its global production volumes by 2% to 4.1 million oil-equivalent barrels per day.