Cairn Lanka to drill on fourth oil well next week
Cairn Lanka (Private) Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cairn
India, would start drilling on the fourth oil well (second stage) near
Kalpitiya from February 1.
Dr. Sunil Bharati, Director of Cairn India, said that the success
obtained from the first three oil wells in the Manner deeps sea,
prompted them to go in for the drilling of the fourth oil well.
“After a second round of drilling and surveys as part of its second
phase operations, we will decide on the commercial viability of the
findings by the mid-year,” he added.
He said that a special drill ship, ‘Discoverer Seven Seas’ capable of
operating in a depth of up to 6,500 feet is already in the location.
He said that he was optimistic concerning the future of their
operations in Sri Lanka, as they had already found Hydro Carbon in two
wells, a substance which generates natural gas and oil.
He said that looking back, he was also happy with the support
received from the government and all other stakeholders.
The Block SL 2007-01-001 was awarded to Cairn Lanka in the bid round
held in 2008.
This deep-water offshore block is located in the Gulf of Mannar, with
a water depth ranging from 400 to 1,900 metres.
Post acquisition and interpretation of 600 sq km 3D seismic data
during Phase two exploration period in Block SL 2007-01-001; exploration
drilling was initially planned for mid 2013.
However, due to early rig availability and excellent logistical
preparations, the drilling date has now advanced by a quarter. The
preparations for Phase II drilling activity is now complete.
The first phase of the programme in 2011 resulted in two successive
gas and condensate discoveries. Cairn Lanka’s successful drilling
programme, the first in Sri Lanka in 30 years, established for the first
time a working petroleum system in the Mannar Basin.
He said that their initial commitment to the Sri Lankan operations
had been US$ 110 million.
“However, we had invested a further US$ 40 million up to last final
year. This year we would make further investments,” he said.
The Mannar Basin has eight oil and gas exploration blocks and two of
them have been granted to China and India.
Officials of Russia’s largest oil company, Gazprom, recently visited
Sri Lanka to hold discussions on oil exploration in the Mannar Basin.