Bankers to fully operate Patos-Marinza field

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Mar. 31
-- Albania’s state Albpetrol Sh.A. reached agreement under which Bankers Petroleum Corp., Calgary, will replace Albpetrol as operator of the entire Patos-Marinza oil field and contract area in Albania.

Bankers will pay $24 million, plus a further $10 million for environmental stewardship and social retrenchment, for the 140 active wells making a combined 400 b/d of oil that it doesn’t already operate. The takeover is effective Mar. 31.

Under Bankers’ existing agreement, Albpetrol retain all liabilities and obligations for legacy environmental damages in the contract area.

Bankers will shut-in all existing production and associated facilities from the wells in the next 3 months and clean up, reequip, and reactivate them over the subsequent few months. It will also contemplate plans to develop north and south extensions of the current field boundary. The activities will occur within the company’s existing 2011 budget scope and production timeline.

Bankers’ initial agreement provided the rights to take over the wells over an extended period, and the new deal accelerates reactivation, reduces administrative processes, and halts produced water disposal from Albpetrol’s production facilities into surface drainage canals. Reactivation of the wells and expansion of the development plan over the entire contract area will provide the economic returns that offset the upfront acquisition costs, Bankers said.

The company operates Patos-Marinza and Kucova fields in Albania. It recently reported that its production averaged 10,424 b/d of oil in the last quarter of 2010 and 9,597 b/d for the year, all from Patos-Marinza field.

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