With 7th oil discovery, Exxon now projecting over 500,000 barrels per day

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ExxonMobil has announced that with its seventh oil find, this time at the Pacora-1 exploration well, it is expecting oil production to increase to 500,000 barrels per day as opposed to the 120,000 barrels it had earlier projected for 2020.

Stabroek Block: The fields explored by Exxon and its partners in the Stabroek Block

According to a release from the Business Wire, ExxonMobil encountered approximately 65 feet (20 meters) of high-quality, oil-bearing sandstone reservoir. The well was safely drilled to 18,363 feet (5,597 meters) depth in 6,781 feet (2,067 meters) of water. Drilling commenced on January 29, 2018.

“This latest discovery further increases our confidence in developing this key area of the Stabroek Block,” said Steve Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Company.

Moreover, he noted that “Pacora will be developed in conjunction with the giant Payara field, and along with other phases, will help bring Guyana production to more than 500,000 barrels per day.”

The projected exponential increase in oil production from Exxon comes at a time when Government has decided to relinquish the responsibility for the oil sector from Natural Resources Minister, Raphael Trotman and vest it in the Department of Energy, a new department that will be created and managed under the Ministry of the Presidency.

In the lead up to its establishment, Cabinet has mandated that Trotman will head a Task Force, which would comprise the Ministers of Finance, State, Public Infrastructure and Business. The Ministers of Public Security, Public Telecommunications, Ministers of Education and Social Protection are also expected to be included.  The Task Force has been tasked with the formulation of a proposal for the development of the mandate of the Department of Energy, as well as how it will be structured and staffed.

Trotman had stated that “all policy matters, including, but not limited to, the negotiating and entering into contracts, and issuing of licences for exploration and production, be transferred/re-assigned to the Ministry of the Presidency and placed within a Department of Energy and Development.”

Since the revelation of a secret US$18M signing bonus, the emerging sector has been mired in controversy.

Moreover, the political Opposition and experts in the field continue to critcise the Petroleum agreement that Government signed with ExxonMobil, which they said will see Guyana losing out millions in revenue as the contract in more favoured towards the oil giant than it is towards Guyana.

Government has since announced however, that it will not be revisiting the agreement which the experts had said can be renegotiated.

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