Santos Starts Up Production at Fletcher Finucane Offshore AU

Santos Ltd. has commenced oil production from its $490 million Fletcher Finucane project in the Carnarvon Basin offshore Western Australia. The operator said the development, which was sanctioned in January 2012, came online ahead of schedule and on budget.

The oil development consists of a three-well subsea tieback to the existing Santos-operated Mutineer Exeter floating production, storage and offloading facility.

With gross proved and probable reserves estimated at about 14 million barrels, the field is expected to produce at a rate of 15,000 barrels per day for the first year of production, stated the operator in a released statement.

"Fletcher Finucane start-up adds significantly to our oil production and is the fifth development project Santos has delivered on budget and schedule in the past two years," stated David Knox, Santos' chief executive in a statement.

Strong project management and focused execution is what allowed the operator to deliver first oil 16 months after the project was sanctioned, Knox added.

"Importantly, this tieback extends the economic life of Mutineer Exeter," said John Anderson, Santos' vice president of Western Australia and Northern Territory. "We have also secured a rig and joint venture approval to drill the Vanuatu prospect, which is the first of a number of identified near-field exploration tieback opportunities. If successful, Vanuatu could be tied back to our new subsea equipment at Fletcher."    

Finucane South is located in a water depth of about 459 feet (140 meters) in WA-191-P, which is situated at the northern end of the Carnarvon Basin about 9 miles (15 kilometers) east of the Mutineer facility. Serving as operator of the permit is Santos, holding a 44 percent interest.


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