SOFIA (Bulgaria), June 16 (SeeNews) – France’s Total plans to carry out a second drilling for oil and gas at Bulgaria’s 1-21 Han Asparuh offshore exploration block in the autumn, the energy ministry has said.
Total currently continues to process seismic data from exploration at the block, the ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
In April, the Bulgarian government said it had extended by 135 days the permit held by France's Total, Austria’s OMV and Spain’s Repsol to explore for oil and natural gas at the 1-21 Han Asparuh block.
In October, Total said it had discovered oil in the 1-21 Han Asparuh block.
The 1-21 Han Asparuh block is located deep offshore in the Bulgarian sector in the western part of the Black Sea and covers an area of 14,220 sq km with water depths up to 2,200 m.
In May 2016, Total, alongside OMV and Repsol, started drilling for oil and gas in the 1-21 Han Asparuh block.
Total has a 40% interest in the project, while OMV and Repsol own stakes of 30% each.
In January 2014, the three companies completed a 210-day 3D seismic survey, covering 7,740 sq km. It came after a 2D seismic survey of 3,000 km, which was completed in October 2013. However, in December 2014, the consortium decided to delay drilling at the block due to the slump in global oil prices.
Total won a permit for prospecting and exploration of oil and gas in the 1-21 Han Asparuh block in 2012. Under the terms of the contract, Total committed to invest over 1.0 billion euro ($1.1 billion) in the gas exploration process, while Bulgaria would receive 40 million euro in the form of a bonus payments from the deal, the economy ministry said at the time.
($ = 0.8956 euro)