Apsara Oil Field Project
The Apsara oil field project brings new jobs to the industry which is a welcome sight. The Apsara oil field project is a Cambodian oil field found in Block A of the expansive Khmer Basin in the Gulf of Thailand. Upon completion, it would be the country’s first oil field given that Cambodia has so far been relying on foreign imports for its energy needs.
This apsara project is jointly owned and operated by KrisEnergy Group with a share of 95pct, and the government with 5pct. The two parties officially signed an agreement to start construction of the off-shore field in August 2017. At the current rate of development, production from the oil site is expected to begin in the next 2yrs.
KrisEnergy, an independent upstream oil & gas firm, was pleased to announce that they had made a Final Investment Decision (FID) to commence with development of the 1st phase of Apsara oil field, the country’s preliminary hydrocarbon development project.
Earlier in 2014, KrisEnergy had bought out Chevron Corp’s major operating interest in the field for $65 million. This is after Chevron discovered oil in the region in 2004, but failed to convince the Cambodian government into reaching a development agreement with them.
Block A would be a single independent minimum facility 24-slot wellhead unit, expected to process up to 30,000bbl of liquid per day with oil, water and gas separation facilities also present on the vessel. Oil will be transported through a 1.5km channel for storage to a permanently docked floating, storage and offloading container.
Apsara Oil Field Site
The site covers a total area of 3083sq km with water depths of between 50-80m. Moreover, KrisEnergy notes that individual oil wells in the field are small in scale and spread over a large landmass, they will thus require significant financial resources and time to wholly develop. In addition, reservoir production performance at the coastal basin is yet to be proven.
A total of 7 prospective areas of development have been identified in Khmer Basin for oil production using 3D data technology, these are Angkea Sel, Bokor, Poulo Wai, Apsara, Basit, Rotanak and Da. According to KrisEnergy’s CEO and head of Cambodian operations, Kelvin Tang, the FID is ‘a major step in advancing the Apsara development agenda’ within the expected timeframe.
Out of these development blocks, Apsara is the first geological area to undergo drilling groundwork. The company’s technical and operations teams are currently overseeing preparations for tenders for equipment, materials and services. Similarly, consultations are ongoing with parties interested in joining the groundbreaking project, with an aim of reducing operational risks and capital spending exposure.
Block A has a total of 27 rigs that have already been sunk in the region, with 13 of them striking oil and gas. 6 of the wells were dug in the Apsara field block and encountered hydrocarbon deposits between vertical depths of 73ft to 138ft. Moreover, 4 of the 6 wells were tested and experienced flows at rates varying from between 410bod and 860 barrels of oil per day.
Apsara Oil Field Development
Initial development for the field’s phase 1 project has been sub-divided into 3 stages that include 1A, 1B and 1C. Phase 1A shall involve the digging of 20 development wells from an independent offshore platform. Once finished, it will be the first platform to be put up in the Apsara block and is expected to include processing facilities and the 24-slot wellhead.
The processing unit will have the capacity to work on up to 30,000 barrels of oil per day, whereas recovered hydrocarbons shall be transferred to a permanently docked floating, storage and offloading (FSO) facility though a pipeline system.
Similarly, development of phase 1B will entirely be dependent on successful completion of 1A, plus productivity ratio of the first phase will closely be monitored for a period lasting 6 months before the next stage is commenced.
Stage 1B is expected to include the installation of 3 additional platforms which include B, C and D, they will be linked back to podium A through a series of 5km-long associated pipelines. The FSO vessel will also accommodate oil production from phase 1B.
Even though the first stage of the Apsara field will begin with just one production platform, it may potentially increase to 10 platforms depending on the final oil output determination.
Earlier speaking at the signing ceremony in Phnom Penh, KrisEnergy’s Chief Operating Officer Mr. Kelvin Tang said that the first oil will be delivered ‘sometime in 2019.’ He also mentioned that the Cambodian government will receive around $500 million throughout the project’s lifespan in terms of fees, taxes and royalties.