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Neptune on third oil test in West Nile Uganda

Wednesday, 25th May, 2011

NEPTUNE Petroleum, the firm exploring for oil and gas in the West Nile has commenced operational arrangements to drill a third test well.

The drilling is set for October depending on the availability of a rig.
Peter Kingston, the executive chairman of Tower Resources plc, a London-based oil and gas firm that wholly owns Neptune, said a drilling consultancy firm had already been appointed to manage the programme.

He revealed that a high density geochemical survey, conducted by GORE Geochemical Surveys, was completed at the end of April over the prospect area to prepare for a 2-D seismic programme covering 150-200 kms.

“The contract for the seismic study has been signed with TESLA-IMC International a UK geophysical contractor,” Kingston noted, adding that the findings expected in mid July would guide the selection of the new well location.

Although the oil has thus far been elusive, Kingston said further specialized laboratory and airborne analyses have proved that the license area has “genuine potential” to host reserves at some points.

“There is good reason to believe that a location can be found for a well to be drilled to test potential resources of about 100 million barrels,” he said.

He said the new well could have a better chance of success than the first two, based on interpretation of the cumulative evidence to date.

Several studies, including a high resolution aero gravity gradiometry (“GGI”) survey that was completed in July last year, have been conducted since the abandonment of the last well, Avivi-1, in February.

The well, which was drilled to a total depth of 764 metres, did not encounter oil, but persistent methane gas traces were ran into.

Additional scrutiny of data from Iti-1, the first exploration well, confirmed the likelihood presence of oil to a possible structural spill point in poor quality reservoir.

Now newly interpreted data clearly indicates an area where basin depth plunges to about 2,500 metres and this is expected to be favourable for the generation of hydrocarbons, Kingston said.

He said the interpretation had provided the basis for a focused seismic programme, which is about to begin.

By FRANK MUGABI : The New Vision Newspaper

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