The provinces of Oran and Bejaia are delimited by Sonatrach as offshore exploration areas where the group expects to achieve its first offshore drilling after seismic studies on their territorial waters.
A source of Sonatrach told APS that the interpretation of 2D seismic data of 1,200 KM, constituting the Algerian coast, has guided exploration to these two wilaya. Processing and interpretation of the 2D seismic data acquired by Sonatrach with international companies specialized in marine seismic revealed a probable existence of a hydrocarbon potential.
However, the same source said that at this stage of exploration, Sonatrach is not able to confirm the existence of this potential as the evaluation of 3D seismic data conducted by the oil company in collaboration with the French CGG (Compagnie Générale geophysics) has not been completed. She stated that the territorial waters of Oran and Bejaia "are favorable perimeters of the seismic point of view," but "we must await the results of the processing of seismic data in order to decide exactly" on their hydrocarbon potential.
As a reminder, Sonatrach, signed in late 2013, a four-month contract with GSA to conduct a 3D seismic program on the Algerian coast. The contract includes the acquisition and processing of seismic data. Both parties are almost ready to complete the interpretation and processing of the 3D seismic. Moreover, the national oil company had acquired the company in 2000 Western Geco, a subsidiary of Schlumberger services specializing in geophysical, seismic 2D datas of 10 000 km2 offshore.
The national oil company had also acquired in 2011 2D seismic datas on 5000 additional km2. Regarding offshore seismic data acquired in 2011 still they concerned two exploration blocks, including a 3,000 km2, located between Bejaia and Annaba in the east and a second 2,000 km2 between Ténès and Mostaganem in west of Algiers. These seismic data revealed that the areas likely to contain hydrocarbons are located between 2,000 and 2,500 meters.
It was said that after the phase of geophysical, Sonatrach will begin the geology, with a first offshore exploration drilling in 2015 that the group intends to carry alone or in partnership, but the decision on which option to use notes the strategic choices of the Department of Energy, the same source also states that group. The cost of a single offshore drilling close to 100 million dollars, it must be clarified.