Eni to operate Angola pre-salt block

ENI HAS WON an international tender to operate Block 35 in deep-water offshore Angola as it pushes to expand on its core African market and boost deep-water development.

Eni has said it will control operations and have a 30 per cent interest in the project. Other partners of the joint venture are Angola's Sonangol with a 45 per cent stake and Spain's Repsol with 25 per cent. The deal involves drilling two wells and conducting 3D seismic surveys on a 2500-sq-km area, which will be carried out in the first five years of exploration, Eni said.

Block 35 is in deep-water offshore Angola, 150 km off the coast of Luanda, and covers 4831 sq km of potential pre-salt mining acreage. BP and Total were among other international majors awarded concessions to explore in Angola's ultra-deep water blocks known as pre-salt blocks, Angola's state-owned oil firm Sonangol said.

Eni said its operatorship of the project would allow it to leverage its deep-water experience gained through participation in the adjacent Blocks 15 and 14, where it holds a 20 per cent interest, and in Block 15/06 where Eni successfully completed the first exploration campaign in recent weeks.

Eni has been in Angola since 1980 and its equity output is about 130,000 boepd.

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