Chevron unit farms into Mauritania offshore blocks

Chevron Mauritania Exploration Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Chevron Corp., has agreed to acquire 30% nonoperated working interest in Blocks C8, C12, and C13 offshore Mauritania from Kosmos Energy Ltd., Dallas.

The three blocks cover a contiguous area of 27,200 sq km and lie in 1,600-3,000 m of water.

In exchange for the blocks, Chevron will pay a disproportionate share of the costs of one exploration well and a second contingent exploration well, subject to maximum expenditure caps. Chevron will also pay its proportionate share of previously incurred exploration costs.

Chevron will not initially fund drilling of the Tortue prospect, but retains the option to participate in this prospect after the transaction is completed. The deal is subject to the approval of Mauritania’s government.

Kosmos Energy will retain 60% interest and remain operator. Societe Mauritanienne des Hydrocarbures et de Patrimoine Minier (SMHPM), Mauritania’s national oil company, will maintain 10% interest. Following any commercial discovery after the exploration phase, Chevron will become the operator and maintain 30% interest.

Kosmos’ 2015 exploration work program in Mauritania currently includes two wells to be drilled by the Atwood Achiever drillship (OGJ Online, June 11, 2013). The first exploration well will test Tortue, with estimated resources of 2 billion boe recoverable across both Mauritania and Senegal.

A second exploration well will test the Marsouin prospect with estimated resources of 300 million boe recoverable, replacing the previously announced Orca prospect in the 2015 drilling program.

Kosmos has held rights to conduct exploration in the C8, C12, and C13 contract areas since 2012 under production sharing contracts with Mauritania’s government (OGJ Online, Apr. 10, 2012).

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