Eni Strikes Light Oil at Cuica

Infrastructure-led exploration program leads to significant find.

Armada Olombendo FPSO.
Armada Olombendo FPSO.

Eni has made a new light-oil discovery in Block 15/06 at its Cuica prospect in the deep waters offshore Angola. The prospect is located inside the Cabaça Development Area and close to the Armada Olombendo FPSO (East Hub). Eni estimates Cuica could hold between 200 and 250 million bbl of oil in place.

The Cuica-1 NFW was drilled as a deviated well by Seadrill-operated drillship Sonagol Libongos in 500 m of water and reached a total vertical depth of 4100 m, encountering an 80-m total column of reservoir of light oil (38 °API) in sandstones of Miocene age with good petrophysical properties. The discovery well is going to be sidetracked up-dip to be placed in an optimal position as a producer well. According to Eni, data collection from the well indicates an expected production capacity of around 10,000 BOPD.

Cuica is the second significant oil discovery inside the existing Cabaça Development Area. The well location, intentionally placed close to East Hub’s subsea network, will allow a fast-track tie-in of the exploration well and relevant production. Eni expects the well could be on line within 6 months.

Following the discoveries of Kalimba, Afoxé, Ndungu, Agidigbo, Agogo and appraisals achieved between 2018 and 2020, Cuica represents the first commercial discovery in Block 15/06 after the relaunch of the exploration campaign post-2020 COVID-19 pandemic. The discovery confirms the exploration potential of the block. A 3-year extension of the exploration period of Block 15/06 was recently granted until November 2023.

The Block 15/06 joint venture comprises Eni (operator, 36.8421%), Sonangol P&P (36.8421%), and SSI Fifteen Ltd. (26.3158%).