27 Dec 2010 17:10

Lukoil eyes Liberia

MOSCOW. Dec 27 (Interfax) - Top managers from Russian oil company Lukoil Overseas, the operator of Lukoil extraction projects in other countries, have visited three West African countries, notably Liberia, the corporate newsletter Neftyaniye Vedomosti writes.

One of their meetings was in the Ghanaian capital Accra, where Lukoil Overseas President Andrei Kuzyayev met with the country's energy minister, Dr. Joe Oteng Adjei. They talked about the possibility of further expanding the company's presence in Ghana, including new projects, the newsletter writes.

This was addressed during Kuzyayev's meeting with the general director of the country's national oil company GNPC, Nana Asafo-Adjaye, where the two company chiefs confirmed decision that drilling be expanded at the Cape Three Points Deep Water in the even sufficiently large oil reserves are discovered.

After Ghana, Kuzyayev had talks in Freetown, Sierra Leone, and Lukoil Overseas Senior Vice President Dmitry Timoshenko - in Monrovia, the capital of Liberia. The newsletter says both are rather quickly restoring economies wrecked by civil war.

Along with the U.S. company Vanco Energy, Lukoil is now working two projects in the Gulf of Guinea: Cape Three Points Deep Water (Ghana) and Cl-101, Cl-205, and Cl-401 (Cote d'Ivoire). The first exploratory well drilling at the first in February meant the opening of a major hydrocarbons deposit.

In Ghana, Lukoil has discovered some ten promising structures with potential resources of up to 15 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe), as well as another roughly nine in Cote d'Ivoire with potential resources of up to 20 billion boe. In 2011-2012, the drilling of as many at thirteen assessment and exploratory wells is planned at the blocks. Investment in geological prospecting work will come to $700-$900 million.

Lukoil plans to sign an agreement soon with a drilling subcontractor to do the work in Ghana in the next two years.

Its West African projects are key for the company, Lukoil said this year.