Ayala Group secures bigger stake in West Palawan offshore contract
Danessa Rivera (The Philippine Star) - February 19, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — ACE Enexor Inc. (formerly Phima Petroleum and Geothermal Inc.) has secured a bigger stake in service contract (SC)  55 offshore west Palawan after one of its partners withdrew.

The Department of Energy (DOE) approved the assignment by Century Red Pte. Ltd. of its 37.5 percent interest in SC 55 to Palawan55 Exploration & Production Corp.

Palawan55 now holds a 75 percent interest in the gas prospect.

ACE Enexor owns 75 percent of Palawan55 while AC Energy Philippines Inc. owns 25 percent.

The other partner in SC 55 is Pryce Gases Inc. (PGI), which owns the remaining 25 percent.

Meanwhile, the SC 55 consortium is still awaiting DOE’s confirmation that the project has entered the appraisal period.

This as the Ayala Group committed to continue the development of the oil and gas assets it acquired from the Phinma group last year.

The SC 55 consortium had notified the government that it entered into sub-phase 5 effective Aug. 26, where in it would drill one ultradeepwater well in the second quarter.

Depending on the reinterpretation of certain seismic data outside of the current study area, the SC 55 consortium may also undertake a new 3D seismic program to mature other prospects within the contract to drillable status.

In August 2015, the SC 55 consortium drilled the Hawkeye-1 well in 1,700 meters of water at a cost of $23.5 million.

The well discovered natural gas at the crest of the target structure, but the estimated volume of the accumulation was deemed by the former operator, Australia-based Otto Energy Ltd. through Otto Energy Philippines Inc., to be non-commercial on a stand-alone basis.

This drove Otto Energy to withdraw from the project in November 2016. The Australian firm had a 68.18 percent participating interest in SC 55 which it assigned to the remaining joint venture partners, namely Palawan55, Century Red and PGI.

SC 55 was estimated to have some 2.2 trillion cubic feet of gas, according to the Department of Energy (DOE).

The Hawkeye well was believed to have an estimated 480 million barrels of oil identified on 2D seismic originally acquired by Otto in 2007 and further defined with the 600-km 3D seismic acquisition in late 2009.

SC 55 is a deep-water block located in the southwest Palawan Basin, covering an area of 9,880 sq. km. It is in the middle of a proven regional oil and gas fairway that extends from the productive Borneo offshore region in the southwest, to the offshore Philippine production assets northwest of Palawan.

ACE ENEXOR INC.
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