ExxonMobil, Det Norske Make Minor Discovery on Eitri Prospect

ExxonMobil Exploration & Production Norway AS (ExxonMobil), operator of production license 027 D, has concluded the drilling of wildcat well 25/8-16 S and appraisal well 25/8-16 A. Det norske oljeselskap ASA (Det norske) carried out the drilling operations on behalf of ExxonMobil. The wells are located approximately 6 kilometers southeast of the Jotun field in the North Sea.

The primary exploration target for the well was to prove petroleum in Paleocene reservoir rocks. The secondary exploration target was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks from the Lower Jurassic. Limited quantities of oil were proven in a relatively thin reservoir in the Paleocene (the Heimdal Formation). The secondary target in the Statfjord Formation was water-bearing. None of the wells were formation-tested, but data collection and sampling were conducted.

These are the two first exploration wells in production license 027 D after it was carved out from production license 027 B in December 2007. 25/8-16 S was drilled to a vertical depth of 2107 meters below sea level and was concluded in the Statfjord formation in Lower Jurassic rocks. 25/8-16 A was drilled to a vertical depth of 2164 meters and was concluded in the Shetland Group. The sea depth is 126 meters. The wells will now be permanently plugged and abandoned.

Det norske's vice president for Reserves and Producing Fields, Odd Ragnar Heum, stated that the result at Eitri is disappointing: "We did find oil, but it is too small to be regarded as commercial. We are still optimistic for this license, and look forward to drill the well at the Jetta prospect later this year."

The wells were drilled by Bredford Dolphin, which now will proceed to production license 383 in the Norwegian Sea to drill wildcat well 6507/3-6 where Det norske oljeselskap ASA is the operator.

Partners in license PL027D are: ExxonMobil (operator), Det norske oljeselskap ASA and Dana Petroleum.

Following a transaction with the Norwegian company, Bridge Energy, which is subject to the usual government consent, Dana will hold a 30% interest in PL027D having farmed out a 10% interest in the license prior to the drilling of the Eitri well.

The Jetta exploration well is planned to be drilled in PL027D later this year, which has been brought forward from 2010.

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