Dana Gas Unlocks Fifth Significant Discovery in Egypt

Nile Delta
(Click to Enlarge)

Dana Gas, the Middle East's first and largest regional private sector natural gas company, has announced another significant gas discovery in one of the company's concessions in the Egyptian Nile Delta. The Azhar-1 well is set to add up to 100 billion cubic feet (16 million barrels of oil equivalent) to the company's reserves in Egypt.

This comes soon after the announcement of a dry gas discovery at the West Manzala-2 well and three gas and condensate discoveries at the El Basant-1, El-Basant-2 and Salma-1 wells. Azhar-1 is the latest in a string of discoveries resulting from Dana Gas's aggressive drilling campaign in Egypt, which began in 2008 and continues to yield results in 2009.

Commenting on this new discovery, Dana Gas Upstream Executive Director Mr. Ahmed Al-Arbeed said, "The discovery at the Azhar-1 well represents our fifth consecutive discovery from our 2008 - 2009 drilling campaign. We are delighted that the extensive planning that went into the drilling campaign is continuing to yield such positive results, which will boost the company's production and profitability.

"A preliminary estimate of the exploration reserves of Azhar-1 discovery is in excess of 100 billion cubic feet (bcf) of gas and additional wells are planned for other potential hydrocarbon bearing zones that might increase the total reserves up to 150 bcf gas."

The Azhar-1 well is located in the West El Manzala Concession, approximately 10 kilometers from the Company's El Wastani gas processing facilities, and was spudded on 6 December 2008, reaching a total depth of 3,150 metres in the upper Sidi Salim formation.

The well revealed 18 meters of net pay in a good quality sandstone reservoir of the Qawasim formation. The initial production test from an 18 meter interval yielded production of 15.1 million standard cubic feet per day of gas and 444 barrels of condensate per day through a 32/64" choke.

Dana Gas Egypt Country Director, Dr. Hany Elsharkawi explained that the development plan for this discovery is currently being prepared. "The plan includes the drilling of a number of appraisal and development wells that will be tied into the nearby pipeline, which Dana Gas is currently constructing, to connect the recent El Basant discovery to the El Wastani Field. We expect to start production from Azhar-1 during mid 2009, which will take the Dana Gas El Wastani plant to full capacity. The close proximity of this discovery to our existing plant and to the El Basant discovery enables us to bring these fields on stream quickly and comparatively cheaply," he said.

The Azhar-1 discovery is the latest addition to Dana Gas' Egyptian reserves, which doubled in 2008 due to a very successful drilling campaign. The continuing campaign is set to strengthen the firm's foundation for further growth in reserves and production.

Dana Gas is the sixth highest natural gas producer in Egypt. The company ended 2008 with a daily production rate from its Egyptian operations of 31,640 barrels of oil equivalent (boe). The firm has made a number of significant discoveries in Egypt, including the first commercial oil discovery ever made in Southern Egypt.


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