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New oil discovery in Libya

October 3, 2005, 12:30 CEST

A promising oil discovery has been made on exploration block NC186 in the Libyan Murzuq Basin, some 800 kilometres south of Tripoli. Repsol YPF is operator of the block, where Hydro holds an 8 percent ownership stake.

The discovery was made in well I1 on exploration block NC186 in the Sahara Desert, which covers an area of 4.300 square kilometres.

The I1 well is the third commitment well of the second exploratory phase, which started in May 2003.

Four discoveries have been made in this block already, with preliminary recoverable reserves estimated at more than 400 million barrels of light oil.

Hydro has also been awarded a new operatorship for exploration license 146-1 in the same area. The new discovery, and the operatorship for the new block, strengthens the company's position in Libya and the importance of Hydro's assets in the country.

Well I1-NC186 reached a total depth of 1,717 meters where a significant oil column was found in the Ordovician age Mamuniyat sandstone formation. The well is located 10 kilometres southwest of last year's H1-NC186 discovery.

Two of the four discoveries in NC186, A and D, have come on stream over the last two years with a production of 45.000 barrels of oil per day.

The field development plan for the B-NC186 field has been submitted to the Libyan National Oil Corporation for approval, while the field development plan for last year's H-NC186 discovery is currently in preparation.

Production from all fields is connected to the Zawia terminal on the Mediterranean coast via a 30-inch pipeline.

Partners:

Libyan National Oil Corporation (NOC)

60.0 percent

Hydro

8.0 percent

Repsol YPF (operator)

12.8 percent

Total

9.6 percent

OMV

9.6 percent