E.ON Makes First Gas Discovery in Algerian Rhourde Yacoub Block

E.ON Ruhrgas and Sonatrach have encountered first gas in the Rhourde Yacoub block. In cooperation with Sonatrach, the Algerian National Oil & Gas Company, E.ON Ruhrgas E&P, the operator of the Rhourde Yacoub exploration block, has successfully completed the drilling and testing of the Zemlet Cherguia-1extension (ZCH-1ext) exploration well. The field is located in the eastern Algerian Sahara, around 250 kilometers south-east of the town of Hassi Messaoud.

"We are glad to announce a successful gas test from Rhourde Yacoub. This result is another important step for our upstream business," said Klaus Schäfer, CEO of E.ON Ruhrgas. The Rhourde Yacoub block is operated by E.ON Ruhrgas E&P with an equity share of 49 %. Sonatrach as the other joint venture partner holds the majority of 51 %. The well is the second exploration well drilled by E.ON Ruhrgas E&P in Rhourde Yacoub.

"The success of Rhourde Yacoub highlights E.ON’s commitment to investing in the Algerian E&P industry," stressed Frank Sivertsen, CEO of E.ON Ruhrgas E&P. The well proved gas/condensate in the Tournaisian F1-A formation. The F1-A formation flowed at well test rates of 19,500 m3/h with associated condensate rates of 4.7 m3/h with a flowing well head pressure of 3,500 psi on a 32/64 choke. "The exploration and production of natural gas is a growth segment within E.ON Ruhrgas. Our mid-term goal is to produce 10 billion m³ of equity gas annually. We are focusing our upstream business on three regions: the British and Norwegian North Sea, Russia and North Africa," said Sivertsen.

Rhourde Yacoub is located in the gas and oil-prone Berkine Basin where exploration started in the 1990s. In the second half of 2008, E.ON Ruhrgas E&P took part in the first Algerian licensing round after a new hydrocarbon law was introduced in 2005. In December 2008, E.ON Ruhrgas E&P won the bid for the Rhourde Yacoub license which covers 1091 square kilometers.