As Italian oil giant Eni reported its lowest production levels to record, the US-based Fieldwood Energy experienced a breakthrough, ushering in its leading production position for the private oil production sector in Mexico. While the international industry of oil and gas is still heavily influenced by the progression of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the North American company has entered a privileged stage, of which only time can determine its longevity.
Fieldwood Energy E&P’s Mexican arm is a local hydrocarbon exploration company, based in Mexico City. Its portfolio consists of two fields, Ichakil and Pokoch, which constitute a 58km² area located in shallow waters off the coast of Campeche. The company operates in the Contract Area 4 in the Gulf of Mexico via a 50/50 consortium with Petrobal under shared production terms. The fields contain both light crude and gas.
Eighty-four percent of private oil production is carried out by five companies: Fieldwood, Petrofac, Hokchi Energy, Eni and Diavaz. Nevertheless, the private sector’s production represents merely 5 percent of Mexico’s overall oil production, with 95 percent left to state-owned company PEMEX.
After overcoming initial setbacks in the beginning of 2021, Fieldwood Energy has reported production of up to 23.5MBOE/d between the Ichakil and Pokoch sea fields. This is no small feat, since this amounts to nearly a quarter of the total private oil production, standing at 88.7MBOE/d during Feb. 2022, according to data provided by CNH. For private production, this meant an overall monthly upturn of 3 percent and of 70 percent compared to Feb. 2021, according to Bloomberg.
By contrast, Eni is currently facing the most unproductive stage since it started its Mexican operations in Mexico at Mizton in June 2019, which made it the first private sector operator to record offshore oil production in Mexico. According to CNH’s data, the company’s Feb. 2022 production stands unprecedentedly low, at 9.4MBOE/d. Bloomberg reports that Eni has recently suffered from pressure level hurdles, which resulted in an increase in gas production but, conversely, in lower levels of oil. These variations escalated quickly and even led the company’s President, Rogelio Hernández Cázares, to admit that it caused damages to Mizton’s infrastructure.
Now that Eni’s export permitting hurdle has been resolved, it can look forward to improve these figures. The IOC currently has two wellhead platforms in operations, Miztón and Amoca, though the company has expressed that it may start operations on Tecoali and further advance the developments on Amoca soon.