TransAtlantic Petroleum Corp. has been awarded the Tselfat exploration permit covering 2,000 square kilometers (500,000 acres) in northern Morocco. Tselfat has three fields, Haricha, Brou Draa and Tselfat, that produced from the early 1920s to 1970s, with limited production continuing into the 1990s. While production estimates for the three fields is difficult, historical data suggests cumulative production is in the range of 4 million barrels of oil and 10 billion cubic feet (bcf) of gas.
The Tselfat permit provides several exciting opportunities including redevelopment of the existing fields, extensions of known productive horizons, and exploration of higher impact targets at depth. This award represents a substantial expansion of the Company's activities in Morocco.
During the exploration phase, TransAtlantic will operate and bear 100% of the costs to earn a 75% interest. The national oil company of Morocco, National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines ("ONHYM"), is carried for 25% of the costs during the exploration phase. The Company (75%) and ONHYM (25%) will each pay their share of costs in the development phase. Currently, royalties are 10% on oil and 5% on gas, there is a 10 year holiday on corporate tax, and operations are exempted from VAT and custom duties.
The Haricha Field was discovered in the early 1950's on a large surface anticline with hydrocarbon seeps. The field was developed with 30 wells drilled to a depth of less than 2,000 meters and produced approximately 3.5 million barrels of oil and 9.5 bcf of gas from porous Jurassic age sandstones. The field is a complex structural trap formed by a thrust fault that has not been fully exploited. Based on available 2-D seismic, potential exists for a deeper sub-thrust play below the known productive horizon.
The Bou Draa field was discovered in 1934. The Bou Draa structure is a large surface anticline generated by a regional thrust fault. The surface anticline, that has a topographic expression extending for approximately 10 kilometers, was discovered by wells drilled on hydrocarbon seeps. Over 140 shallow wells were drilled in a 6 square kilometer area and produced less than 1 million barrels recorded production of light oil from fractured carbonates and sandstones. It is believed that hydrocarbon reserves can be recovered using horizontal drilling techniques, artificial stimulation and reservoir pressure maintenance. Further upside potential exists in subthrust reservoirs in Jurassic age sandstones.
The Tselfat field was discovered in 1918 by wells drilled on a surface anticline with hydrocarbon seeps. More than 90 shallow wells were drilled and produced less than 0.50 million barrels of oil recorded production from Jurassic carbonate reservoirs.
The Bou Draa field is located near the city of Sidi Kacem where there is an active refinery built originally built to refine oil from the Bou Draa and Haricha Fields.
Proposed Work Program
The Company will commence a review of all the existing well data on the Tselfat permit, reprocess much of the 2D seismic and initiate a field program. In addition, the Company will shoot a 3D survey over the Bou Draa and Haricha fields that will be followed by an exploratory well to test the previously untested Jurassic formations in the sub-thrust.