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BP, Sonangol ink deal to advance activities offshore Angola

Oil major BP PLC and state-owned oil firm Sonangol EP signed an agreement Dec. 17 to progress to a final investment decision for developing the Platina field in deepwater Block 18 offshore Angola.

The Platina field development will be BP's first newly operated development in Angola since the PSVM project in Block 31 began production in 2013. It would be the second phase of development in Block 18, following the Greater Plutonio project that started up in 2007.

The final investment decision is anticipated in the second quarter of 2019, and first production is expected by late 2021 or early 2022.

The companies also agreed to extend the production license for the BP-operated Greater Plutonio project on Block 18 to 2032, subject to government approval. The extension will allow later-life production from the fields, including future output from Platina, according to a news release.

Under the extension agreement, Sonangol will take an 8% interest in the block. BP now holds a 50% interest in Block 18, and Sonangol Sinopec International Ltd. owns the other 50%.

Average production in the Greater Plutonio field reached 116,000 barrels oil per day in 2017.

The companies also signed two memoranda of understanding, one in which the companies agreed to discuss further exploration activities in Blocks 31 and 18, to enter discussions for Blocks 46 and 47, and to explore options in Block 18/15. The other enables them to enter into discussions regarding financing and construction of the planned terminal and storage facility at Barra do Dande in the Bengo province.