Significant gas discovery announced in Morocco
London - British firm Sound Energy announced a significant gas discovery and a potential single gas column at the company’s Tendrara licence in Morocco.
Permits for Tendrara Lakbir cover nearly 15,000 sq. km in the Highlands area in north-eastern Morocco.
“The first Tendrara well, TE-6, was drilled to a measured vertical depth of 2,665 metres, encountered the top of the structure and approximately 28 metres of net gas pay in the TAGI reservoir,” Sound Energy said in a statement.
Sound Energy said it achieved stabilised gas flow rate of 17 million cubic feet per day.
“This rate is significantly above initial expectations and represents a highly commercial rate,” the company said.
“I am absolutely delighted to confirm a material commercial gas discovery at Tendrara and a resounding success at the first of our three strategic plays,” James Parsons, chief executive officer of Sound Energy, said in the release.
“I believe Tendrara, Meridja and the Eastern Morocco TAGI play have the potential to be a material hydrocarbon province on a regional scale and therefore to transform both Sound Energy and the Moroccan gas industry.”
Sound Energy and Moroccan private-public consortium Oil & Gas Investments Fund (OGIF) in June announced the start of TE-6 drilling and promising clues found during initial operations.
Sam Wahab, an analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald, told Proactive Investors that the well’s flow rate was about seven times the expected flow.
“We believe the company may have established a material hydrocarbon province on a global scale,” Wahab said.
The discovery will have a positive effect on the Figuig region, which is struggling economically. It will help Morocco overall, the North African country, which produces 70 cubic metres (bcm), alleviate its heavy reliance on gas imports.
Morocco, a net energy importer, consumes 1 bcm of gas annually. However, gas is still only 5 percent of the kingdom’s energy bill.
It also seeks to import more than 5 million tonnes a year by 2025 and plans to build a Liquefied Natural Gas terminal at Jorf Lasfar, a deepwater port south of the coastal city of El Jadida.
Several indications, including that none of the previously drilled wells on the licence have identified a gas/ water contact, suggests a significant gas column within a continuous extended structure.
“This structure may include and extend beyond the reservoir identified at TE-2, some 30km to the north-east. A further well (the company’s third well, called TE-8) will be required at the edge of the potential structure to confirm this and is now being planned for later this year,” the company release stated.
OGIF has expressed its readiness to finance construction of a gas pipeline linking the Tendrara field to Europe at a cost of $50 million.
The Tendrara licence is owned 27.5% by Sound Energy; OGIF owns the rest.
Parsons said: “We are very pleased to have received this first expression of interest which potentially enables us to construct the infrastructure which would be required at Tendrara without equity dilution, whilst also further broadening our strong partnership with OGIF.”
Sound Energy, together with Schlumberger, is preparing for a second well at Tendrara using drilling techniques that are expected to significantly increase the individual well flow rate. This is to be followed by an extended well test. The rig-up process at the second well is complete and drilling was expected to commence during August.
TE-6 will be suspended until the results of the second well — TE-7 — are confirmed, at which point the company expects to apply for a production concession and commence detailed engineering for construction of the necessary infrastructure, the release stated.
“We shall now, together with Schlumberger, proceed with the second well and a further outpost well, which will provide further insight on the long-term potential,” Parsons said.