Excel Exploration and Production Company Limited, owners of Nigeria’s first marginal oil field has written to the Naval headquarters to intervene following an incursion on its facility by men of the Nigerian Navy, on the claim that it does not have the legal standing to operate the Eremor field on Oil Mining Lease (OML) 46.
Eremor oil field on OML 46 is located in Peretorugbene community in Bayelsa State.
Excel Explaration and Production also says it is willing to have its activities inspected to ascertain the genuiness of its operations.
The company further says it plans to seek the approval of the Nigerian Navy to transport its crude oil to designated Floating Production Storage and Off-loading(FPSO).
Also, it says it has already met with the Navy signals department to ask for its crude oil shuttle application requirements.
The management of the company, in the letter to the Chief of Naval Staff, said it is willing to co-operate with the Navy, if there are other approvals it needs to get, in order to have seamless operations. It further requests that its operational supervisor who was arrested by the Navy be released.
The Naval men on Wednesday 26 November, while on patrol, were said to have gone to the operational location of the company and placed its workers under arrest, thus halting the company’s operations.
This is inspite of the Navy being given all of the company’s necessary operational documents before it comenced operations, the letter said.
“They were shown all the approvals we have to operate the field and yet our men were still not allowed their freedom, despite the fact we have a JTF team also overseeing our operations for security reasons”, the letter stated.
Narrating the various processes the company went through to get the approvals, Abiodun Awosika, managing director of the company, stated that the field was awarded to the company as the successful bidder during the 2003 marginal field bid rounds.
While approval was given to it by the Department of Petroleum Resources to re-enter and complete the existing Eremor Well1 in April 29, 2008, the approvals were revalidated on July 27, 2011 and April 3rd respectively. The well was successfully re-entered in December 2013.
As a follow up to the above achievement, approval was sought from the Department of Petroleum Resources for the production test of Eremor Well, and extended well test after clean up.
The main objective of the testing after the well clean up, he said, was to establish the following: fluid type, determine well productivity with quarzt gauges in the well; to enable determination of critical reservoir properties and parameters such as reservoir flow rates/capacity, reservoir pressure, reservoir heterogeneities, and reservoir limits and boundaries and minimum connected volume.
According to the letter signed by Abiodun Awosika, the company stopped flowing the reservoir in July 2014 due to the tanks in the barge being full, to the extent that the company could not complete the extended well test as approved by the DPR, until the company’s pending request from the DPR for crude oil oil export permit to evacuate and sell the crude from the field to an offtaker had been granted.
He also drew the attention of the chief of Naval Staff to the fact that there is no limit to the amount of oil that should be produced from an extended well test approval from the DPR, as approval is given on a three monthly basis and can also be extended until the desired result has been achieved.
‘’Our fixed and stationary Dera-1 storage and supporting tug boat, Running Charly, are duly registered with all the government agencies responsible for the registration of barges/vessels operating in the country’s waters, including DPR ,JTF and NIMASA”. the letter stated.