Offshore Upstream Activities Taking Shape in Myanmar, Slowly

Singapore-registered Berlanga Myanmar Pte Ltd. – a unit of The Netherlands’s Berlanga Holding BV –and Myanmar’s A-1 Mining Co. Ltd., paid MOGE $15 million in signature bonus and $500,000 in data fee for the shallow water Block M-8 in the Mottama Basin.

Big Players Come Onboard Too

Majors such as Royal Dutch Shell plc, in partnership with Japan’s Mitsui Oil Exploration Co. Ltd., signed three PSCs in February for Blocks AD-9 and AD-11 in the Rakhine Basin and Block MD-5 in the Thanintharyi Basin.

“The step marks Shell’s return to upstream operations in Myanmar ... The three blocks offer an exciting frontier exploration opportunity to apply the advanced deepwater technical capabilities we have built up around the world over the past three decades,” Graeme Smith, Shell’s vice president of Exploration Asia and Australia said in a Feb. 5 release.

Local daily Myanmar Times reported in late February that France’s Total S.A. will explore for hydrocarbons at deepwater Block YWB in the Thanintharyi Basin, near the producing Yetagun gas field operated by Petronas Carigali Sdn Berhad – the upstream unit of Malaysia’s Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas).

Another two major industry players, BG Group and Australia’s Woodside Energy Ltd., will work with Myanmar Petroleum Exploration & Production Co. Ltd. after signing four PSCs in the Rakhine Basin. These comprise of shallow water Blocks A-4 and A-7 as well as deepwater Blocks AD-2 and AD-5. The partners will invest $545.5 million and $535.1 million for the shallow water and the deepwater blocks, respectively, according to the Ministry of Energy.

“Woodside planned to commence an active program of exploration in the region in 2015 and beyond ... The Rakhine Basin is an emerging oil and gas province that fits very well with Woodside’s proven capabilities in deepwater exploration and development,” Woodside’s Executive Vice President Global Exploration Phil Loader said March 20.

In late March, Chevron Corp. entered into a PSC for shallow water Block A-5 in the Rakhine Basin. The U.S. major and local partner Royal Marine Engineering Co. committed to spending $227.85 million on Block A-5 exploration.


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