The Company also said that drilling on the MLE-4 appraisal well (located 4.9 kilometers southwest of the MLE-3 well) has reached a depth of 4,400 meters as at October 20, 2003 with a projected total depth of 4,600 meters. An intermediate logging run and a reservoir pressure survey were conducted over the Carboniferous and Upper Devonian reservoirs, to a depth of 3,650 meters. Interpretation of this data indicates the MLE field extends southward from the current limits of proven and probable reserves. Drilling is now continuing to total depth, expected to be reached on or around October 24, 2003, after which a full suite of logs will be run to total depth and a testing program will commence. Following the completion of the MLE-4 well, the drilling rig will move to the MLE-5 appraisal well located 1.3 kilometers to the east of the MLE-3 well.
The MLE pool has reserves estimated by the Company's independent engineers, DeGolyer and MacNaughton, of 5.7 trillion cubic feet equivalent on a proved, probable and possible basis and the three wells drilled to date have combined flow rates in excess of 77,000 barrels oil equivalent per day. Upon completion of the MLE-4 and MLE-5 wells, FCP expects to have completed the appraisal stage of the MLE field and anticipates moving directly to the development stage.
In June 2003, FCP commenced a 600 square kilometer 3D seismic program immediately adjacent to and west of the MLE field. Field acquisition of seismic data was completed in September 2003. Based on the results to date, the Company intends to accelerate its drilling program on Block 405b by contracting a second drilling rig. At least eight exploration and appraisal locations have been identified for drilling on the block over the next year.
"The results of the wells continue to exceed our expectations. The early interpretation of the 3D seismic to the west of the MLE field is encouraging and has led management to accelerate the drilling program on the block," said Richard Anderson, President & CEO.
On Yacoub Block 406a, the Company has completed the acquisition of 240 kilometers of 2D seismic data and has received a three-month extension to complete the drilling of a second exploration well by February 10, 2004.
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