Anglo-Dutch major Royal Dutch Shell announced Wednesday that it has signed two offshore oil and gas Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) with Chinese national oil company CNOOC, and a PSC amendment with CNPC, the parent of PetroChina, for a new development phase of the Changbei gas field in China.
Shell reported that it has also entered an agreement with CNOOC for its participation in two Shell exploration blocks offshore Gabon, West Africa.
The two offshore oil and gas PSCs with CNOOC are for blocks 62/02 and 62/17 in the Yinggehai Basin. Shell, as operator, will apply advanced seismic acquisition and processing technologies to conduct 3D seismic data surveys in the Yinggehai blocks.
Shell will cover the costs for the acquisition of seismic data and will use advanced drilling technologies to drill exploration wells during the exploration phase. Shell will hold a 100-percent working interest during the exploration phase, which will be reduced to 49 percent in any eventual development phase, with CNOOC as majority partner.
The onshore tight gas PSC amendment with CNPC represents a new phase for the development of the existing Changbei block with 653 square miles in the Ordos Basin, and adds scope to develop additional tight gas sands and further develop the already producing main reservoir, said Shell.
Subject to government approval and pending the outcome of the appraisal campaign, this additional development project could increase the current production plateau of 320 million standard cubic feet of gas per day, added the company. Shell will continue to be the operator at Changbei.
In Gabon, CNOOC will acquire a 25-percent participating interest in offshore exploration blocks BC9 and BCD10. CNOOC will reimburse Shell for 25 percent of certain past exploration costs and carry part of the future exploration costs, while Shell will remain operator with a 75-percent interest.
The agreement is subject to government approval. Lim Haw-Kuang, Executive Chairman of Shell Companies in China, commented in a statement:
"We are delighted about the return to offshore exploration in China and the opportunity to work with CNOOC again on a major project in the country. We are equally delighted to continue and expand the Changbei success story in partnership with CNPC. Moreover, we are very pleased to have entered the farm-out agreement with CNOOC in Gabon. These new projects in partnership with Chinese companies are the latest showcase of our China strategy to work with our Chinese counterparts both in China and globally to help meet the country's energy needs to fuel its fast growing economy."
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