Eni chief executive Claudio Descalzi confirmed the decision on Monday and said that he set out fast-track development options for the find during his meeting with Adnoc chief executive Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber.
Descalzi noted that the fast-track development centres around “leveraging the other projects currently under execution, as well as utilising existing Adnoc facilities with the aim to optimise costs and accelerate common production targets”.
However, he did not further evaluate the precise Adnoc facilities that could be tapped for the development.
Adnoc in July confirmed a second gas discovery from the first exploration well at the Eni-operated block.
The state-owned giant said earlier that the discovery “from a new deeper reservoir” holds an estimated 1 trillion to 1.5 trillion cubic feet of raw gas in place.
“This significant find builds on the initial finding in February 2022 from a shallower target [of the same well], taking the total amount of gas in place from this single well to 2.5 Tcf to 3.5 Tcf,” Adnoc claimed.
Eni has a 70% stake and is operator during the exploration phase, with Thailand’s PTTEP holding the remaining 30%.
However, during the block’s development phase, Adnoc has the right to hold up to 60% stake, Upstream understands.
A consortium led by Eni and Thailand’s PTTEP in 2019 was awarded the exploration rights for Offshore Block 2 as part of Adnoc’s debut competitive blocks bid round.
Eni has been present in Abu Dhabi since 2018. It operates three exploration licences and participates with Adnoc on three offshore development and production concessions — Lower Zakum, Umm Shaif and Nasr, and Ghasha.
The Italian player said the two companies on Monday also “discussed the acceleration of the multi-billion-dollar Ghasha project".
“The project is estimated to hold significant recoverable gas and is expected to produce more than 1.5 billion cubic feet of gas per day in addition to more than 120,000 barrels of high-value oil and condensates per day”, Eni added.
Two exploration rounds
Adnoc has carried out two conventional oil and gas bid rounds in Abu Dhabi in recent years, awarding multiple tracts to leading international oil and gas companies.
Abu Dhabi’s acreage has attracted a growing number of oil majors, including Indian and Chinese players, as it expands its international alliances with the aim of gaining competitive terms and securing long-term markets for its oil exports.
Adnoc produces almost all of the United Arab Emirates’ crude and aims to expand its oil production capacity to 5 million barrels per day by 2030 — up from the existing 4 million bpd — and is spending billions of dollars on multiple development projects.
Abu Dhabi last year announced a significant increase in its oil and gas reserves and outlined plans to invest $127 billion through 2026 as Adnoc embarks on multiple expansion projects in the emirate.
The company last year said that its domestic reserves had increased by an additional 4 billion barrels of oil and 16 Tcf of natural gas.