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Upstream News Merakes March 2019

Asiatek Energi Mitratama

29 Mar 2019

ITALIAN energy major Eni has moved into the development drilling phase of its Merakes deep-water gas development off Kalimantan, Indonesia, while major contractors are busy with their project workscopes.

The semi-submersible Scarabeo-7 has been working for Eni for a considerable period of time, and recently completed drilling the Merakes East exploration prospect which hit 15 metres of gas-bearing net sands in two levels of Miocene Age.

The same Saipem-owned semisub is now tasked with the six production wells for Merakes, which holds an estimated 2 trillion cubic feet of lean gas and lies in a water depth of 1500 metres.The field is being developed as a 35-kilometre subsea tie-back to Eni’s Jangkrik floating production unit.

From there, gas will be transported to the Bontang liquefied natural gas plant via the existing Jangkrik and East Kalimantan transportation network.

The main contractors for Merakes include TechnipFMC, which is tasked with the subsea umbilicals, flowlines and risers; and an alliance of Sapura Energy and Timas Suplindo for the deep-water infield pipelines.

It is understood the SapuraTimas joint venture is also responsible for the subsea production system.

TechnipFMC and Sapura-Timas bid successfully for their contracts in the fourth quarter last year.

Their commercial bids exceeded the operator’s budgets, which would have prompted a re-bid under the former production sharing contract regime, but sources said Eni elected to award the contracts after taking on a new gross split mechanism contract.

When the final investment decision was made in mid-December 2018, Eni said its East Sepinggan PSC had just been converted to a gross split scheme.

Sources said Asiatek Energi, a sub-contractor to Sapura-Timas, is tasked with the detailed design engineering for the deep-water pipelines, pipeline end terminations and in-line tee.

The pipelines for Merakes will be the deepest water pipelines in Indonesia to date at 1500 metres, said sources.

Asiatek Energi is a Jakarta-based subsea engineering company growing in stature; sources said it has cut its teeth on projects in the region including Premier Oil’s Natuna Sea Block A, Kangean Energy’s Terang Sirasun Batur phase two project, and Husky Energy’s Luihua 29-1 development in China.

In Eni’s Strategy presentation earlier this month, the Italian operator said Merakes is due for start-up in mid-2020.

Project execution is currently at about the 10% stage, and gross plateau output is expected to be 73,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

“The Merakes development project is a successful outcome of the Eni near-field exploration and appraisal strategy, which allows us to maximize the synergies with existing nearby infrastructures, such as those of the Jangkrik field which started up in May 2017, as well as reducing the costs and the time-to-market of the project,” Eni said when it sanctioned the project.

“This development will also strengthen Eni’s technological and operations leadership in the development of deep-water gas fields in Indonesia.”

The Italian player operates the East Sepinggan contract area with an 85% interest, while Pertamina Hulu Energi holds the remaining 15%.

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