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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Premier hits oil, mulls next move

Premier hits oil, mulls next move

T HE consortium led by Premier Oil Camboya will consider its next move around the end of November after striking oil and gas with its first exploratory well in Cambodia's offshore Block 4.

Representatives from the consortium's three equal partners, British-owned Premier, Australian outfit Ampolex and the Japanese company Idemitsu, are to meet in Singapore to plot a strategy.

They will decide whether to opt for a 2 or 3-d seismic survey and what area to conduct it in within the block, which covers an area of more than 30,000 square km 150 km soutwest of Sihanoukville.

The oil executives should be encouraged by the strike, the third in four test wells so far drilled off Cambodia's shores. Currently more work is being carried out evaluating the find prior to the Singapore meeting.

Premier said in a press release that the well achieved a maximum flow of 1,180 barrels per day (bpd) and 1.3 million cubic feet of gas per day, and reached a total depth of 3,867 meters.

The flow rate is much better than earlier strikes made by Enterprise oil, 180 bpd or Campex, 500 bpd, the other two operators currently exploring offshore of Cambodia.

However an industry source said no accurate measure of the commerciality of strike can be made from a test well, which can inhibit the flow rate.

The source pointed out that the size of reserves have to be assessed in addition to flow rates to decide if a find is worth exploiting commercially.

The oil, measuring 42 on the American Petroleum Institute scale is said to be typical of southeast Asian crude with a fairly high wax content.

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