ACE Enexor Inc., controlled by the Ayala Group, is preparing a proposal to drill an exploratory well in Service Sontract 55 in southwest Palawan, a top executive said Monday.
“Notwithstanding the continuing mobility and other restrictions ushered in by the pandemic, our company remains focused on its commitment to drill a deepwater well in SC 55 block in 2022,” ACE Enexor chairman Eric Francia said in the annual stockholders’ meeting.
Francia said the technical and preliminary studies on SC 55 were completed in 2020.
“And barring any unforeseen events, Enexor will undertake definite drilling planning in the second quarter of 2021,” he said.
ACE Enexor president Raymundo Reyes said preparations for the drilling proposal for the exploratory well were underway.
“This is a comprehensive technical document that details the plan for constructing the borehole and evaluating the rock formations and fluids that will encountered in the subsurface,” Reyes said.
Once completed, the proposal will be submitted to the Department of Energy for approval.
Palawan55 Exploration & Production Corp., ACE Enexor subsidiary, owns a 75-percent interest and is the consortium operator in SC 55, while Pryce Gases Inc. owns the remaining 25 percent.
“Following the DOE’s go ahead, Palawan55 will commence tendering process for the required drilling rig, major equipment and supplies and oil field services,” Reyes said.
Reyes said the company filed for a one-year force majeure request with the DOE related to the delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The application is pending with the DOE.
“We are aware of the headwinds the pandemic might post to drilling operations in the near future such as mobility restrictions and potential supply chain restrictions, our consortium has requested the DOE for declaration of a one-year force majeure to cover any unforeseen delays in the timetable,” Reyes said.
He said the proposed drilling program for SC 55 would be a milestone in Enexor’s efforts to help the country develop indigenous gas resources as a pathway to energy security and the energy transition
The DOE approved last year the work program which includes the drilling of an appraisal well and the budget of Palawan55 for SC 55.
SC 55 covers an area of 9,880 square kilometers.