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Ophir Energy to start 4th phase of development on the Bualuang Oil Field

17 May 2017 14:03

Ophir Energy has announced that a Final Investment Decision has been taken to commence the fourth phase of development on the Bualuang Oil Field in the Gulf of Thailand.

The Company confirmed that the total investment is forecast to be $145m from now until 2020 and is expected to deliver NAV growth of upwards of $50m (NPV10) representing an unlevered IRR of 40+%.

The development will consist of a 12 slot bridge-linked wellhead structure with additional power generation. It will include the drilling of up to 14 wells and an expansion of the water disposal capacity on the Bravo platform.

ERC Equipoise, Ophir's reserves auditors, have provided a letter of comfort to the Board that forecasts that the development will convert 9.2mmbo of contingent resources to reserves. First oil expected in the second half of 2018.

Through a combination of additional debt leverage and the Thai fiscal terms, the project is expected to start delivering cumulative positive cash flows from the start of 2019.

Ophir also updated on its 2017 Infill Drilling Programme and confirmed that the Vantage Drilling Topaz Driller jack up rig is on location at the Bualuang field and has commenced operations.

This programme consists of two development wells and one well targeting untested prospective resources in a near-field step-out location. Abandoned well stock is to be recycled to target the three new locations with the goal of the development wells growing production by around 1,400 bopd. The cost of these development wells will be c. $12m and is expected to add $23m to the NPV of the project and payback within 12 months.

Production year to date from the field is averaging 8,100 bopd.

Nick Cooper, CEO of Ophir Energy commented: "Bualuang is a reliable, low cost, cash generative asset. Phase 4 is a great opportunity to grow NAV per share through the monetisation of additional resource with quick paybacks and a healthy IRR."

At 2:03pm: (LON:OPHR) Ophir Energy share price was -2.5p at 85.75p

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