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BP to Drill Offshore Libya by End-June

Source: Reuters 2/17/2011, Location: Africa

BP Plc, recovering from last year's Gulf of Mexico oil spill, plans to begin offshore exploration drilling in Libya by the end of June, later than previously expected.

Spokesman Robert Wine said on Thursday that BP expected to drill offshore in Libya in the first half of this year and that work on an onshore well would begin sooner.

The company had previously planned to begin offshore drilling in 2010.

"We postponed it to do extra checks following the oil spill and also the rig we had lined up we decided wasn't suitable, so we've got another rig," he said.

"Onshore, we've got a rig in place and they are getting ready, so that should get under way shortly."

The drilling offshore the North African country may be at a greater depth than it conducted in Gulf of Mexico waters beneath which BP's Macondo well ruptured last year, killing 11 workers and leading to the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history.

BP plans to use a new drillship, the Deep Ocean Ascension owned by Pride International Inc, for its drilling in the Gulf of Sirte in the Mediterranean. It had planned to use another rig owned by Noble Corp.

The water in the Gulf of Sirte is as much as 2,000 metres (6,500 feet) deep. The Macondo well was drilled at a depth of about 5,000 feet.

BP said, following the report of a White House panel into the spill published in January, that it supported efforts to improve industry safety and had already made changes designed to do this.

The Libyan drilling will be the first under a $900 million deal BP signed with Libya in 2007 after the lifting of international sanctions on Libya removed barriers to doing business in the country.

At the time, BP described the deal as its largest single exploration commitment.

BP's Libyan plans have aroused suspicion in the United States, where some politicians have said the British government and BP wanted convicted Lockerbie bomber Abdel Basset al-Megrahi released to smooth BP's deal with Libya. He was freed by Scottish authorities in 2009.

Both BP and Scottish authorities have denied the oil company lobbied for him to be released.

Exploration News in Libya >>

Norway >>  2/18/2019 - Wintershall Norge A/S, operator of production licence 847, has concluded the drilling of wildcat well 6706/6-2 S. The well was drilled about 60 kilom...
United States >>  2/18/2019 - 88 Energy has advised that the Winx-1 well, North Slope of Alaska, spudded on schedule on Feb 15 (AK time). The well was drilled to 600 ft prior to pu...

Norway >>  2/15/2019 - Equinor Energy AS, operator of production licence 248 C, has completed the drilling of wildcat well 35/11-22 S. The well was drilled in the northern ...
Norway >>  2/15/2019 - Wellesley Petroleum AS, operator of production licence 931, has completed the drilling of wildcat well 35/4-2. The well was drilled about 33 kilometr...

United States >>  2/15/2019 - 88 Energy has advised the following in relation to its oil and gas operations on the North Slope of Alaska. ...
South Africa >>  2/8/2019 - Tower Resources plc, the AIM listed oil and gas company with its focus on Africa, notes the announcement dated 7 February 2019 from Total S.A. ("Total...

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