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EGYPT - The Oil Fields In Western Desert.

The Western Desert, an area of about 450,000 sq km, produces 162,000 b/d, up form 117,500 b/d in late 1995. This area has become a major producer of gas (see following pages). The main oil producing ventures in the Western Desert are the following:

Agiba Petroleum Co. (Agypetco), a JV of EGPC and Agip's IEOC, produces about 48,000 b/d from its Meleiha and West Razzaq blocks, compared to 49,200 b/d from mid-1998 to mid-1999, and 30,000 b/d in late 1995. Output comes from its Meleiha fields (found in 1972 with 31.6 deg. oil), Ighar (1987), Falak (1988), West Razzaq (1994) and others. In Feb. 1997, IEOC began producing 3,800 b/d from its first oil well in the Western Desert's Qattara depression, where the field's reserves were estimated at 4m bls. The field, Ras Qattara, is 80 metres below sea level. Several other firms - from the US, Britain and Russia - are also exploring for oil in this depression. A number of other discoveries made by IEOC are linked to the main production system. This is tied to a 167 km pipeline to El Hamra oil terminal on the Mediterranean which went on stream in mid-1986 with the capacity of 90,000 b/d and was later expanded to 140,000 b/d.

Khalda Petroleum Co.(KPC) is a JV of EGPC (50%), Repsol (25% & operator), Houston-based Apache Corp. (20% acquired from Phoenix in 1996) and Novus Petroleum of Australia (5% bought in 1998 from Samsung of S. Korea). In previous years partners used to include Conoco and Texas Int'l. KPC's output is 40,000 b/d of 35-46 deg. oils, up from 30,000 b/d in early 1998 and 37,000 b/d in late 1995. It should reach 45,000 b/d in the coming weeks under a $100m programme which has included the drilling of 36 new wells and completion of 30 others. Its fields include Khalda (found in 1983 at depth of 2,570 ft), Salam (1984, with extensions found in 1994/95), Hayat, Safir and Tut (1986), West Tut (1988), Yasser, Aoun and Tareq (1987/88), Kahraman (1991), Shuruq and Shuruq East. KPC has made several small oil discoveries in Khalda and other areas. They are tied to the Salam production system linked to the Meleiha-El Hamra pipeline. KPC also operates the Umbaraka fields following Repsol's 1998 acquisition of the equity in Wepco from Phillips Petroleum of the US (see profile overleaf).

Qarun Petroleum Co., a JV of EGPC (50%), Apache (37.5% acquired in 1996 from Phoenix) and Seagull Energy (12.5% bought from Global Natural Resources). The JV, set up in August 1995, has developed the Qarun field in Upper Egypt to a capacity of over 60,000 b/d of light oil. But its output has since fallen to 36,000 b/d. Qarun field, found in 1994, and its extensions discovered since then lie in Central Egypt on the edge of the Western Desert near a point where the Sumed crude oil pipeline passes towards the Mediterranean terminal of Sidi Kerir. Seagull, operator in the East Beni Suef block just south of Qarun, has found a major field there (see OMT). Repsol in May 1997 found a field, Kom Ombo-1, in a nearby block close to Aswan which tested 7,000 b/d of high quality oil and pointed to a new oil province in Upper Egypt.

GUPCO (BP Amoco/EGPC) has four fields: Abu Al Gharadiq (1982), Razzaq (1972), WD-33-15 (1972) and WD-99 (1975). They produce 20,000 b/d of 35-55 deg. oils, down from more than 22,000 b/d in late 1995. Amoco in 1986 completed development of its small North and North-East Abu Al Gharadiq structures, including a gas production stream, which later helped maintain total output at 20,000 b/d. The oil is sent in a two-phase stream to the Abu Al Gharadiq oil processing plant.

Badreddin Petroleum Co. (Bapetco), EGPC-Shell, produces 14,000 b/d of 38 deg. oil (19,000 b/d in early 1998 & 22,000 b/d in 1995), from Badreddin (1982), BED-2 (1988) and other fields. Shell is the biggest producer of gas in the Western Desert (see following).

Western Desert Petroleum Co. (WEPCO), a JV of EGPC and Repsol (which in 1998 got the equity of Phillips & became operator), was the first in the region to find oil, at Alamein in 1966, and gas at Abu Qir (see below). WEPCO produces 44 deg. oil from Alamein, Yidma (1972), Umbaraka (1976) and the latter's extensions. But its output has declined to 2,000 b/d, compared to 5,000 b/d in early 1998 and 6,000 b/d in 1995. In 1989 it found an off-shore field in West Abu Qir, off Alexandria and 1,500 b/d of 41 deg. API oil, 300 b/d of condensate and 12.5 MCF/d of gas from an Abu Madi formation.

Oasis Petroleum (OAPCO), a JV of EGPC and the private Egyptian firm Forum Petroleum, produces less than 1,050 b/d from the West Qarun and West Gabel El Zeit fields, compared to 1,600 b/d in 1998.

Burg El Arab Petroleum, a JV of EGPC and the private Egyptian firm Kriti Oil & Gas, produces very little oil from the small Burg El Arab and Horus fields. In 1996, Gharib Oil Fields Co. acquired 80% of Kriti.
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Comment:EGYPT - The Oil Fields In Western Desert.
Publication:APS Review Gas Market Trends
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:7EGYP
Date:Jan 10, 2000
Previous Article:EGYPT - The Red Tape.
Next Article:Egypt Is Boosting Gas Production To Over 6,000 MCF/Day By 2015.

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