New Zealand's Crown Minerals Says 34 Wells Drilled During 2005

New Zealand petroleum exploration activity remained buoyant during 2005 with 34 wells being drilled (including sidetracks), Crown Minerals statistics show.

All wells in 2005 were drilled in onshore Taranaki, though two of these were development wells from onshore into the offshore Pohokura gas-condensate field.

No wells were drilled by offshore drill rigs during 2005, though a large program of exploration and development wells is planned through 2006.

For both the past two years well drilling activity has been twice that of 2003 when only 16 wells were drilled totaling just over 35 thousand meters.

A total of approximately 87 thousand meters were made in oil and gas wells during 2005. This is an 8,700 m increase on the 2004 figure of just over 78 thousand meters.

Of the 34 wells drilled in 2005, 19 were exploration wells, 14 were appraisal or development wells, and one water disposal well drilled for the Pohokura field development.

Discoveries were made on two exploration wells, indicating a 10% success rate. Results from at least four exploration wells are still unknown (Supplejack south-1 ST-1, Goss-1, Trapper-1, and Kotiro-1).

Highlights of drilling campaigns conducted during 2005 included positive results from Swift Energy's Piakau North-A1 sidetrack well in Petroleum Mining Licence 38139, Greymouth Petroleum's Turangi-1 well in PEP 38762 and the Supplejack South-1 sidetrack well in PEP 38765.

Swift Energy reported test flow rates of 7 mmscf/d gas and 400 bbls/d condensate from the Piakau North-A1 sidetrack well.

An application for a petroleum mining permit was filed by Greymouth Petroleum Holdings (and subsidiaries) in November 2005 over the entire PEP 38762 area.

In terms of development activity the Pohokura joint venture completed the second of three extended reach production wells (from an onshore location) using the largest onshore rig ever mobilized to New Zealand. Both of these wells set new records for the greatest measured depth attained by a well in New Zealand, both being in excess of 6500 m. Swift Energy also drilled a total of six wells in the Kauri field during 2005.

These statistics are provisional pending the receipt of all second half 2005 activity reports from permit operators.