ERHC Energy in Chad oil blocks exploration deal

EHRCEHRC gained interest in three oil blocks in Chad. (Image source: Sharon Sperry Bloom/Flickr)ERHC Energy has been granted an Exclusive Exploration Authorisation (EEA) for three oil blocks by the government of Chad

The EEA authorises ERHC to undertake oil and gas exploration operations in the Chari-Ouest III, BDS 2008 and Manga blocks in Chad, which are covered by a production sharing contract (PSC).

The initial term of the EEA is for five years and can be renewed for a further three years after this period.

Peter Ntephe, president and chief executive officer of ERHC, said, "With the issuance of the EEA, ERHC can now commence its Chad exploration work programme in earnest. ERHC's goal is to advance quickly toward the identification of leads and prospects and thereafter to drill as quickly as the circumstances permit."

ERHC plans to focus its programme initially on the BDS 2008 block, of which it has 100 per cent interest and Chari Ouest III, of which it has 100 per cent interest in half of the block.

Both blocks are located in Southern Chad and ERHC's holdings in the two blocks encompass 20,860 sq km. They are situated on the northern flank of the Doba/Doseo basin, where Esso and other operators have made discoveries exceeding 1.29 billion barrels of oil equivalent.

ERHC recently invited eligible contractors to submit expressions of interest in providing Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), gravity/magnetic and seismic acquisition services in the focus area.

Martin Wensrich, geoscientist and technical advisor, ERHC said, "Our analysis of gravity, magnetic and 2D seismic data shows that ERHC's Chari-Ouest III and BDS 2008 Blocks fall within the prolific Doba/Doseo Basin. Our main area of focus extends 260km and is on trend and east of the 2011 Benoy-1 discovery by OPIC and north of discoveries by Esso."

The OPIC Benoy-1 well drilled a low-side fault closure and test-flowed oil at a calculated rate of over 2,000 barrels per day from Lower Cretaceous fluvial/deltaic sands.

Esso's Tega #1 encountered hydrocarbon reserves with an estimated potential of eight million barrels of oil equivalent (MMBOE) in the Lower Cretaceous "C" sand. The Esso Maku #1 drilled a Lower Cretaceous faulted structure and encountered hydrocarbons with an estimated potential of 21 MMBOE.

"Our preliminary projections, based on the technical assessments made by the operator of an adjacent block, suggest the likelihood of at least three prospects with a reasonable chance of success on ERHC's blocks.

"Significant work will of course have to be done to identify the prospects and drill them but if our preliminary projections hold, we think that the combined mean potential may be up to 63 MMBOE and the upside exceeding 332 MMBOE," added Wensrich.

Apart from its holdings in Chad, ERHC recently signed a PSC with the Government of the Republic of Kenya on Block 11A in north-western Kenya.

The company also holds working interests in six Blocks in the Nigeria-São Tomé and Príncipe Joint Development Zone (JDZ), as well as 100 per cent of Blocks 4 and 11 of the São Tomé and Príncipe Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), with an option to acquire up to 15 per cent working interests in two other EEZ Blocks.

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