LUKOIL Group carries out exploration works with the purpose of expanding the resource base.
Exploration activities have been consistently delivering good results driven by the advanced exploration techniques and selection of the most promising areas based on research results.
KEY EXPLORATION PROJECTS IN 2020
West Siberia historically accounts for approximately a half of LUKOIL's exploration activities. In 2020, 3D seismic surveys were conducted to prepare a set of prospects in exploration areas for making decisions on further geological surveying and for better understanding of the geology of previously discovered deposits. The further hydrocarbon exploration was carried out to prepare sites for production drilling. Exploration well tests were conducted in the Bolshekhetskaya Depression.
Low permeability reservoirs were also explored in 2020. Exploration drilling at the Sredne-Nazymskoye and Aprelskoye fields confirmed the oil presence in pre-Jurassic and Tyumen formations.
The Zhuravskoye oil field was discovered in the Volga region in 2020 following the drilling of exploration well within the Zhuravsky license area in the north of the Volgograd Region.
One of LUKOIL's priorities is further exploration in the Caspian Sea, given the potential synergies with major field discoveries made in the region earlier.
In 2020, field 3D seismic surveys were conducted at the Severny license area, Severo-Rakushechnaya structure, and near the V. Grayfer field, with a exploration well successfully drilled.
In the Central Caspian license area, the prospecting and appraisal well was drilled at Khazri structure, confirming the productivity of Lower Cretaceous and Upper Jurassic deposits. The Company started the appraisal of drilling results. In late 2020, the drilling of a new exploration well started at the Titonskaya structure.
Most of our international exploration activities were concentrated at Block 10 in Iraq where LUKOIL holds 60 percent as project operator and INPEX holds 40 percent. Appraisal of the previously discovered Eridu field continued under the approved exploration program. Three new appraisal wells were drilled, confirming the field's approved geological model and resource base.
On the Gulf of Mexico shelf, Block 10 (LUKOIL – 20 percent; Cairn – 15 percent; ENI – 65 percent as project operator), tests of a well drilled in 2019 resulted in the discovery of the Saasken field, and preparation of an appraisal plan for the field is now completed. In each of Egypt's WEEM (LUKOIL – 50 percent; EGPC – 50 percent) and WEEM Extension (LUKOIL – 25 percent; Tharwa – 25 percent; Ganope – 50 percent) projects, one exploration well was drilled, both wells successful. The WEEM exploration well detected the presence of oil in horizons between the Tawoos and Tanan fields. The well put into production after tests was completed. At the WEEM project, the exploration well determined the presence of oil in horizons at the Abu Marwa block. The well was put into production after acid fracturing was carried out.
In Uzbekistan, LUKOIL and Uzbekneftegaz signed a memorandum of understanding in 2020, setting forth the basic principles of a new joint venture to be established to focus on exploration and commercial production of hydrocarbons in Uzbekistan.