Austria's OMV reported Thursday that the Ensco-107 (400' jack-up) rig is on its way to the Maari field in the Taranaki Basin, New Zealand, where in April it is set to drill the first of five wells in a drilling campaign that the firm expects to run deep into 2015.
OMV said that this latest drilling campaign offshore New Zealand is expected to keep more than 250 personnel employed on and offshore. The arrival of the Ensco-107 rig in the Maari field will be a return to familiar waters for it, after it drilled the Maari field's original production and water-injection wells as well as the Manaia-1 well.
The rig has already been delivered by the heavy-lift vessel Talisman in Admiralty Bay and the tow to the Maari field will now take less than a day. The rig will then begin its final approach to set up position for moving alongside the Maari wellhead platform.
The goal of the $350-million Maari Growth project is to improve the recovery from the Maari and Manaia reservoirs, and also to find and appraise near-field opportunities to a development stage.
OMV New Zealand Managing Director Peter Zeilinger commented in a company statement:
"The focus of the Maari Growth project is to access untapped oil accumulations in the permit and to better drain the existing reservoirs. This should help stabilize the natural production decline we are seeing at the field and allow us to continue production at Maari for at least another 10 years."
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