PETRONAS Approves Development Plan for Malaysia's Offshore Ophir Oil Field

Australia's Octanex N.L. disclosed Tuesday that Malaysia's state-owned oil and gas company Petroliam Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS) has approved the revised field development plan (FDP) for the Ophir oil field in Block PM 305, offshore Peninsular Malaysia.

Work on the $90 million Ophir field project, which is being developed under a Risk Sharing Contract (RSC) granted in 2014 to Ophir Production Sdn Bhd (OPSB), will commence immediately. OPSB is a joint venture company comprising Octanex (50 percent), Scomi Energy Services Bhd (30 percent) and Vestigo Petroleum Sdn Bhd (20 percent).

Octanex indicated that a comprehensive project cost optimization work for the Ophir oil project was undertaken following the decline in oil price, resulting in approximately 30 percent cost savings due to reduced industry costs.

Facilities for the Ophir oil field include three production wells, a well head platform and a leased floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel.

Octanex said its share of the Ophir project is fully funded via OPSB's 75 percent project financing and Octanex's strategic alliance and funding arrangements with major shareholder, Sabah International Petroleum (SIP). SIP is wholly owned by Sabah Development Bank Berhad (SDB), which is a unit of Sabah's Ministry of Finance.

"This is a significant milestone for Octanex representing the successful culmination of a two year effort at repositioning Octanex as a future oil producer. The revised project plan enhances the economic potential of the Ophir development reflecting the reduced costs offered by the current low oil price environment," Octanex Chief Operating Officer Rae Clark said in a press release.

Scomi, Octanex's partner in OPSB, is a Malaysia-listed upstream oil and gas services company, while Vestigo is a wholly owned subsidiary of PETRONAS Carigali Sdn Bhd -- the upstream arm of PETRONAS -- that focuses on marginal field development.

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