Smaller Fields Show Production Gains
A number of reports published last week show that Mexico’s public and private operators are increasing their oil production levels from a more diverse set of fields and wells.
PEMEX claimed this in its latest results, reporting that 227,000b/d are being produced at new fields that were developed during this administration. This is part of the third trimester of consecutive production increases by the NOC, whose total production levels currently stand at 1.768MMb/d. In remarks delivered to Energy & Commerce, PEMEX pointed out in this report that “during June 2021, production in our new fields equaled 7.3 times the production levels of private companies, which is a milestone that was achieved in one third of the time.”
This increase of production from new fields also represented an increase in lighter crude production, which increased 14.3 percent in the first semester of 2021 when compared to the first semester of 2020. While PEMEX’s flagship mega fields continue to produce increasingly heavy crude, the introduction of new fields into the country’s production portfolio is resulting in a more diverse crude portfolio that can reduce the cost of mixing the crude export basket while also unburdening the country’s refineries and infrastructure from the additional processing needed to refine heavier crudes.
However, these production metrics also need to be considered within the context of last week’s reports regarding the possible measuring errors that PEMEX is indulging in when measuring their crude production.
Next up was Petrofac, which achieved production levels of 21,167b/d during June 2021 in its Santuario-El Golpe field, in the state of Tabasco, according to CNH data. This represented a 6.73 increase from May 2021, and a 40 percent increase from June 2020. Santuario-El Golpe is one of the three fields being operated by Petrofac in different associations with PEMEX and Perenco, with the other two being Magallanes and Arenque.
Finally there was major offshore private operator Hokchi Energy, which attained an increase in early production levels from 9,000b/d to 14,000 b/d with the drilling and completion of its third production well, Hokchi-11DES. While this is the third production well drilled by Hokchi, it is the sixth well in total (the other three are injection wells). Hokchi’s current development plan calls for the eventual drilling of 14 wells, along with the construction of a reception and processing plant in the Dos Bocas port of Tabasco.
These increases in production levels from private operators and newer fields from PEMEX are gradual and considered small but are seen as essential steps towards the goal of making Mexico’s production portfolio more resilient and sustainable through its diversification.