Essar to explore oil and gas off Vietnam’s coast

March 4th, 2008 - 8:08 pm ICT by admin  

(Second Lead)

New Delhi/Mumbai, March 4 (IANS) Essar Oil Ltd said Tuesday that its Mauritius-based subsidiary Essar Exploration and Production (EEPL) has bagged a licence to explore petroleum off Vietnam’s Song Hong river basin. “EEPL has been awarded an offshore block in Vietnam’s prolific Song Hong basin,” Essar Oil told the Bombay Stock Exchange.

“The exploration phase is estimated to last five years and the investment for this programme will be approximately $60 million,” Essar said.

“It is a shallow water block with average water depth of 60 to 70 metres.”

The block was offered under the recent licensing round offering seven offshore blocks, the company said.

The company will conduct detailed geological and geophysical studies and reprocess seismic data. It will also collect, process and interpret fresh seismic data covering 1,000 sq km.

Finally, the firm will drill two exploratory wells with 3,500-metre target depth.

Essar Oil is consolidating exploration and production under its subsidiary EEPL, the company said.

Essar Oil has been in the recent past acquiring stakes in many overseas exploration areas. It has bagged contracts to explore eight oil and gas blocks and a coal bed methane block. These include onshore blocks in Madagascar and an offshore block in Nigeria.

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