NZ's Tui Oil Production Hits 20 Million Barrels

Pan Pacific Petroleum NL

The Tui area oil field in New Zealand's offshore Taranaki basin reached another significant milestone with the production of the 20 millionth barrel of Tui oil.

The achievement comes less than eighteen months after production began on July 30, 2007.

The Tui area oil field includes three producing reservoirs, Tui, Amokura and Pateke and lies 50km off the Taranaki coast.

The Tui area oil field is operated by a joint venture comprising Pan Pacific Petroleum NL (10%), Australian Worldwide Exploration Limited (42.5% and Field Operator), Mitsui Ltd (35%), and New Zealand Oil & Gas Limited (12.5%).

When the investment decision was taken by the joint venture, the proven and probable (2P) reserves were estimated to be 26.8 million barrels (MMbbls).

With the outstanding performance of the fields and the assessment of new information from the production process, this initial reserve figure has been upgraded several times and is currently 50.1 mmbbls.

With 20 MMbbls produced to date, remaining 2P reserves are approximately 30 MMbbls -- meaning that the estimated amount of recoverable oil remaining is still higher than the original total 2P reserve figure.

The oil is produced from four wells through a floating production, storage and offloading vessel (FPSO), the Umuroa. The facilities have performed exceedingly well. With the exception of a planned week long maintenance shutdown in mid-December, oil has been produced every day for more than 500 days, with an excellent safety record maintained.

The oil is shipped by tanker to refineries in Australia and south-east Asia. There have also been several shipments to Hawaii and this month the first shipment will go to Marsden Point near Whangarei in New Zealand.