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Haimara, Tilapia bring offshore deep Guyana finds to 12

Tilapia is crude oil, while Haimara is gas condensate

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Houston — An ExxonMobil-led consortium has made two more discoveries offshore Guyana they call Haimara and Tilapia, the partners said Wednesday, bringing the number of finds on their prolific Stabroek block to an even dozen.

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The discoveries add to an earlier-announced recoverable resource estimate on the block of more than 5 billion barrels of oil equivalent, ExxonMobil and 30% partner Hess Corp said in separate statements issued Wednesday, although a more updated projection was not immediately provided.

By contrast, the consortium's estimate of its Guyana recoverable resource base was 3.2 billion-plus boe just a year ago, a figure which was updated to 4 billion-plus boe in July.

"Big fields get bigger!" Wells Fargo analyst Roger Read said in a Wednesday investor note shortly after the news was announced. "Today's announcement of two more discoveries brings the success rate to 12 [of] 14 and a likely expanding resource base above" 5 billion boe.

The Tilapia-1 and Haimara-1 wells were spudded early last month, but the former was the major oil find. Tilapia-1 encountered 305 feet of oil-bearing sandstone. It was drilled to a depth of 18,786 feet in 5,850 feet of water.

TILAPIA IS FOURTH DISCOVERY IN PROLIFIC TURBOT AREA

Tilapia-1 is sited about 3.4 miles west of the Longtail-1 well, unveiled last June as the eighth Guyana find. Tilapia-1 is the fourth discovery in the area around Turbot, a find in the extreme southeast portion of Stabroek that also includes the recent Longtail and Pluma finds.

On the other hand, the Haimara-1 found 207 feet of high-quality gas condensate bearing sandstone. That well was drilled to 18,289 feet in 4,590 feet of water.

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Haimara-1, located about 19 miles east of the Pluma-1 well, the consortium's tenth discovery made in December 2018, is a potential new area for development, ExxonMobil and Hess said.

ExxonMobil operates Stabroek with 45% interest; China's CNOOC also has a 25% stake. The consortium will next drill Yellowtail-1, a well located about six miles west of Tilapia-1 in the Turbot area, the two US-based partners said.

Liza-1, the first of five likely initial planned developments at Stabroek that are slated to come onstream and produce an eventual 750,000 boe/d by 2025, is slated for first oil early next year. The other four developments have not yet even been sanctioned.

The first phase will encompass the initial Liza-1 discovery. Liza phase two should be sanctioned in Q1 and startup in mid-2022. A third development, Payara, targets sanctioning by year-end 2019 and startup as early as 2023.

Read predicted the prolific Turbot area is likely to support its own standalone development hub.

-- Starr Spencer, starr.spencer@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Richard Rubin, newsdesk@spglobal.com