Petrofac Spuds First Well at West Don, Don Southwest Fields

Petrofac announced that its Energy Developments division, as Operator and on behalf of itself and its co-venturers, has commenced offshore construction and drilling operations on the West Don and Don Southwest fields.

The first well commenced drilling from the Transocean John Shaw semisubmersible drilling rig on August 22 at the West Don field, located in Blocks 211/13b and 211/18a. The commencement of this first development well marks the start of a year-long drilling campaign on the joint development of the West Don and Don Southwest fields. Three wells will be drilled in sequence on West Don prior to moving across to Don Southwest early in 2009.

In addition to drilling, the major multi-phase subsea construction program, with a reel lay vessel completing the lay of the infield pipelines and the first phase of the export infrastructure, has begun. Trenching of the pipelines has also been completed. The installation of the subsea structures and diving tie-ins is scheduled to start at the end of August.

Bill Dunnett, Executive Vice President, project development for Petrofac Energy Developments, commented, "We are pleased to announce the major milestone of commencement of drilling operations on the Don Area development. This, in conjunction with the start of the subsea construction campaign, marks the start of a significant period of sustained offshore operations, managed under the operatorship of Petrofac Energy Developments. The project remains on target for first oil production during the first half of 2009, delivering significant value for Petrofac and the field's joint venture partners."

Both Don Southwest and West Don Fields are located in the northern North Sea, approximately 150 km northeast of the Shetland Islands and 12 km north of the Thistle Field in a water depth of approximately 500 ft.

The Northern Producer floating production facility, which recently finished an assignment on the Galley Field, will be utilised for processing fluids from both fields ahead of export. It has been secured for field life under a lease arrangement, with lease cost based on an oil throughput tariff dependent on Brent oil prices.

Oil export from the Northern Producer will be by offshore tanker loading initially and then by subsea tie-back for export service via the Thistle platform.

West Don Field Partners:

  • Petrofac Energy Developments Ltd. (Operator) (27.700%)
  • Valiant North Sea Ltd. (17.275%)
  • First Oil Expro Ltd. (19.275%)
  • Nippon Oil Exploration and Production U.K. Limited (18.500%)
  • Stratic Energy (UK) Ltd. (17.250%)


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