Italian oil group ENI to drill new oil wells in East Timor

1 July 2011

Dili, East Timor, 1 July – Italian oil group ENI is expected by the end of the year to drill a new oil well in East Timor, where it has been working since 2007, on five blocks, the chairman of Portuguese group Galp Energia, Manuel Ferreira de Oliveira said Thursday in Dili.

Galp has a10 percent share of the consortium operated by its strategic partner ENI, which in turn owns a 33.34 percent share of the Portuguese group, and is continuing to focus on East Timor despite the failure of the Cova 1 well, which was found to be dry.

Drilling work on Cova 1, which is located in ultra-deep waters, at market prices cost around US$80 to 100 million.

Oliveira, who was taking part in Dili in the “East Timor Energy” conference, said that his group “will respond to the call if there is one,” to develop the Greater Sunrise gas field, if negotiations by the East Timor government on the current concession were to breakdown.

The East Timor authorities has blocked the start of exploration at the Greater Sunrise field, which has one of the region’s biggest reserves of natural gas, the concession on which is owned by a consortium led by Australian oil company Woodside.

The reason for the block is that no consideration was given to the possibility of sending the gas to East Timor, thus promoting industrial development in the country. (macauhub)