Nido secures semi for well off Philippines

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Mar. 18
-- Nido Petroleum Philippines Ltd., Manila, will use the Atwood Falcon semisubmersible under a rig-assignment agreement to drill the Gindara prospect on the Service Contract 54B block off Palawan Island, the Philippines.

Nido, a unit of Nido Petroleum Ltd. of Perth and operator of the SC 54B joint venture, entered the agreement with Sarawak Shell Bhd./Sabah Shell Petroleum Co. Ltd. after receiving government approval of a farmout agreement with Shell Philippines Exploration BV.

The semi will move from Labuan, Malaysia, to spud the Gindara-1 well in about 350 m of water in May. It will be the joint venture’s first well on the block, which lies west of SC 54A, where Nido and partners have made the Tindalo, Yakal, Nido 1X1, and Signal Head oil discoveries (OGJ Online, June 8, 2010).

Nido expects the well to drill through a Miocene clastic reservoir en route to the target Lower Miocene Nido limestone, which covers 28 sq km with more than 300 m of relief.

The company’s mean estimate of original hydrocarbons in place in those and possible Mesozoic reservoirs is 1 billion boe. Nido has identified two other prospects on the 3,184-sq-km block, Lapu Lapu and Princesa Deep.

In the farmout, Shell Philippines received a 45% working interest in SC 54B, leaving Nido with 33% and Yilgarn Petroleum Philippines Pty. Ltd., a wholly owned unit of Kairiki Energy of Perth, with 22%.

Shell agreed to contribute 75% of the Gindara-1 costs up to $24 million, $2.5 million of past seismic costs, and a pro rata share of block work program.

Nido remains SC 54B operator for the drilling of the Gindara-1 well.

The Atwood Falcon, built in 1983 and upgraded in 1998 and 2006, can drill to 25,000 ft in 5,000 ft of water.

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