The Government of the Republic of Somaliland has decided to establish a trained and equipped Oilfield Protection Unit that can provide the level of security required by the in-country operators so that future seismic and drilling operations can be conducted safely.
According to the statement released by one of the Oil & gas exploration companies Sterling Energy Plc progress has been made on establishing the OPU, and it is expected to be operational by year end.
According to Sterling Energy Plc.’s Chairman, Alastair Beardsall the creation of the unit will enable the company commence its seismic operations soon.
“We are pleased with the progress in creating the Oilfield Protection Unit and look forward to commencing seismic operations in the Odewayne area as soon as possible.” He said
Meanwhile Sterling Energy has also announced the extension of a 2 year extension to the current work period of the Odewayne Production Sharing Contract, and the dates of each subsequent work period have been adjusted accordingly.
“We thank the Government of the Republic of Somaliland for granting the 2 year extension to allow for the necessary preparations to be made for the future conduct of operations in a safe and secure manner.”
Bearsaall adds that the delay in the amendment to the PSC reflects the delay incurred while the OPU is being established.
The PSC covers block SL6 and part of blocks SL7 and SL10, onshore Somaliland, comprising an area of 22,840 square kilometres. The PSC, awarded in 2005, is in the Third Period which will now expire on 2 November 2016 with an outstanding minimum work obligation of acquiring 500 km of 2D seismic.
The minimum work obligation during the Fourth Period of the PSC (now expiring May 2018) is for the acquisition of 1,000 km of 2D seismic and drilling one exploration well.
Sterling holds a 40% interest in the PSC and will be carried by Genel (50% interest and operator) for the costs of all exploration activities during the Third Period and the Fourth Period of the PSC.