BHP Billiton acquires 12 Gulf of Mexico blocks

Offshore staff

SYDNEY, AustraliaBHP Billiton revealed that it had the apparent winning bids on 12 blocks in the Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 248 in its operational review for 3Q 2016.

The company also signed an agreement with Statoil to acquire an interest in blocks GC 436 and GC 480 in the Gulf of Mexico.

In recent weeks, it has also been reported that the company had been meeting with a panel of experts to consider entering the Mexican market.

In Australia, BHP updated that the WA-475-P permit was canceled per the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act 2006 and the operator entered into a good standing agreement with the Joint Authority.

In South Africa, offshore blocks 3B/4B expired.

A $700-million exploration program is planned for the 2017 financial year, largely focused on drilling activities in the Gulf of Mexico and Trinidad and Tobago.

It recently announced positive drilling results at the Caicos exploration well in the GoM, with oil encountered in multiple horizons. The next step will be drilling the Wildling well in November to further appraise the area.

After encountering hydrocarbons, BHP P&A’d the deepwater LeClerc-1 and LeClerc-ST1 wells, located off Trinidad and Tobago in block 5, in May and July, respectively.

However, for reasons unclarified, the Burrokeet-1 well is suspended awaiting P&A. Despite this, drilling is under way on Burrokeet-2. The latter two wells are located on block 23a.

Oil is the listed target hydrocarbon at all of the above prospects; however, only natural gas was encountered at LeClerc.

Steve Pastor, BHP Billiton president operations, Petroleum, said in August: “While the focus of our program is a commercial oil discovery, we are encouraged by the results of the first well in our Trinidad and Tobago exploration campaign, LeClerc.”


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