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Analysis

Exploration Activities in 2012

Tue, 01/22/2013 - 17:23

The fast pace at which oil and gas exploration projects have developed has led to a wide array of natural gas discoveries. In 2012, four exploration wells drilled at the Burgos asset confirmed natural gas production potential, a large wet gas basin was discovered in the Litoral de Tabasco area, and gas and condensates were discovered in the MacuspanaMuspac asset – is a token of the gas production potential in the Southwestern Marine Region of the Gulf of Mexico. The Energy Ministry expects that this region will become the source of 27% of Pemex E&P’s natural gas production by 2026. Gas and condensates were found in four wells located in the Southeastern Basin: Jolote-101, Sunuapa-401, Teotleco-101 and Navegante-1. In addition, the Gasifero-1 well, located in the Veracruz basin, reported an initial production of 0.3 mcf/d at the end of last year. In the Burgos asset a discovery was made at the Arbolero-1 well, which is part of a series of wells that Pemex drilled in this asset’s Late Jurassic formation during 2012, in the hopes of developing shale gas production in the future.

Shale gas was one of the company’s main finds during 2012. Pemex announced that it found shale gas in several exploration wells on the Mexican side of the Eagle Ford region, which is one of Mexico’s five geological provinces with large shale gas potential. Pemex estimated that the country’s prospective shale gas resources could represent up to seven times the conventional 3P gas reserves that Mexico currently has. Even if Pemex’s gas strategy currently prioritizes imports, further exploration projects will be carried out in the coming years in order to define the country’s shale gas potential. In addition to the exploration project at the Mexican extension of Eagle Ford, Pemex also embarked on the quest for shale gas in the northwestern region of the Gulf of Mexico, near Tampico. Together, these two exploration projects entailed investment of over US$200 million in 2012. This year, Pemex’s management will continue the aforementioned trend; in March 2013, Pemex E&P signed an agreement worth US$244 million for shale gas exploration in Coahuila and Veracruz.