Exploring West Africa and beyond

“We know our current areas of operation very well. We have been active in West Africa for many years, but it’s difficult to expand our activities – early entry costs have risen sharply. Consequently, our ENV team has started to explore new regions outside of our historic core areas in West Africa.”

Guinea-Bissau – Preparing for Drilling

70.71% interest in Block 2, Sinapa
70.71% interest in Blocks 4A and 5A, Esperança

Prospects in Guinea-Bissau

The Atum and the Anchova prospects in the deeper waters of the western part of the licensed area are currently the main drilling targets. The shallower parts of the Sinapa and Esperança licences contain a number of salt-related traps which may be targets for future drilling. The old 3D seismic data over the Eirozes structure have been reprocessed with good results and the plan is to also reprocess the 2010 3D data covering both licences during 2019. In 2017 the decision was made to drill the Atum prospect, located in the deep-water western part of our Guinea-Bissau acreage.

However, ongoing delays resulting from the current political situation in Guinea Bissau mean that it will not be possible for the Atum-1X well to be drilled and appraised before the end of the current licence period, as such the JV are seeking a licence extension for both the Sinapa and Esperanca permits. The resumption of drilling planning is now dependent on a licence extension being granted which we hope will happen sometime in Q2 2020.

Operated by Svenska

Svenska farmed in to the Guinea-Bissau licences in 2007. When the previous operator, Premier Oil, decided to withdraw from the licences, Svenska assumed the operator’s role with an increased equity. The operator’s role involves responsibility for licence management, drilling activities and other technical work, as well as continuous liaison with the Guinea-Bissau authorities.
 In August 2017, Svenska and the JV received a three-year extension from November 2017 to November 2020. The licence extension came with a larger equity for Svenska, as well as improved fiscal terms for water depths greater than 200 metres.
 Despite the somewhat unstable political situation in the country, long-term Swedish support has facilitated Svenska’s discussions with the authorities. The current as well as the previous regime have shown serious commitment to this project.


Svenska holds a 70.71 per cent equity interest in our operated Sinapa Block 2 and Esperança Blocks 4A and 5A licences. Our licence partner Petroguin, Guinea-Bissau’s national energy company, holds 10 per cent, while FAR Ltd holds the remaining 19.29 per cent.

Ivory Coast

27.39% interest in Block CI-40, Kossipo

Kossipo was discovered in 2002 approximately 7.5 kilometres east of Baobab within the CI-40 licence boundaries and as such enjoys the same terms and conditions as Baobab. Following the 2014 3D seismic survey that was acquired over Baobab and the northern part of the Kossipo prospect, a more confident interpretation confirmed the seismic flat spot and justified an appraisal well that was drilled in 2019, Kossipo-2A.

This well encountered a 213 ft oil column in Albian reservoir with an Espoir-type light oil (32° API). The well proves the flatspot represents the Oil Water Contact and as it is similar to that encountered in Kossipo-1X, suggests a single contact across the field. A Drill Test Stem was run confirming the commerciality of the accumulation. The operator, CNR, is planning to invite contractors to a Design Competition which will allow selection of a preferred contractor prior to Engineering Design for the first part of the Kossipo development. The current development plan is based on three production wells and two injectors in the northern compartment tied back to a 4-6 slot production manifold and a four-slot water-injection manifold respectively. The concept will utilise subsea multi-phase pumps tied back to the Baobab FPSO.


Svenska, with a 27.39 per cent interest, is joined by operator Canadian Natural Resources International
(CNR), with 57.61 per cent, and the national oil company Petroci, with 15 per cent interest.

Nigeria – Focus on Field Developement

21.05% interest in OML 145, Uge

The development of the Uge field has been the main subject for discussion within the licence since 2018 with planning for an aquisition of a 1,400 square kilometre 3D seismic survey underway under review. 

On Svenska’s initiative the joint venture undertook third-party feasibility studies covering subsea, flow assurance, floating systems, topsides and export routes, demonstrating that a technically feasible commercial solution existed. The JV  partnership was aligned on the technical solution, and discussion is ongoing on evaluation and scheduling methodology. In parallel National Petroleum Investment Management Services have requested further studies to be undertaken with respect to a co-development of Uge and Nsiko located in the nearby OML 140. NAPIMS emphasised that the Federation is seeking increased activity and production from the
petroleum sector but that Nsiko and Uge are too small to develop individually. They must be co-developed to ensure that the Federation receives an adequate take and to prevent the proliferation of deepwater FPSOs.

However, we reached a full stop in the project as the Nigerian government introduced new legislation which imposes a new royalty fee on all deepwater licences. With a substantial increase in the government take, the economics of the project are not attractive as it stands today. Together with our partners we are working to find a solution that works for us as well as the industry as a whole in Nigeria.

OML 145, UGE
The Uge Main discovery is located in the north-western part of the block in water depth of approximately 1,200 metres. It lies 50 kilometres south-east of the large Shell-operated Bonga field complex in OML 118 and about 60 kilometres east of Chevron’s Nsiko discovery in OML 140.

The current estimated development base case indicates  Estimated Ultimate Recoverable Reserves of approximately 320 mmboe. The licence also contains three potential tieback candidates in the Uge North, Nza and Orso discoveries.


Operator ExxonMobil and partners Chevron, Oando and Svenska each hold a 21.0526% interest in the OML 145 licence. The Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) holds the remaining 15.7896%.

Further reading