The Weald-based UK Oil & Gas (UKOG) plc confirmed today its bid for three new licences in Turkey had been unsuccessful.
UKOG announced exactly 12 months ago that it had applied with its partner, Aladdin Middle East Ltd, for four blocks, totalling 612km2.
Today, a statement from the company said all the licences had been awarded to the Turkish national oil company, TPAO.
It described the outcome as disappointing but said the licences were “always ancillary to the company’s main focus”, which was appraising the Basur-Resan area of Turkey, where UKOG has a 50% stake.
A year ago, UKOG said the area of the new licences was undrilled and only “scantily explored” but had higher volumes of oil than the UK’s weald basin.
Today’s statement said UKOG was continuing to look for additional projects in Turkey and had reviewed a further opportunity to the southeast of the Resan licence. This contained what it described as “an interesting and potentially material undrilled anticlinal feature analogous to both East Sadak and Basur-Resan”.
UKOG also said today it was planning to send surplus casings to Turkey to be used for a sidetrack to the B-3 well, drilled earlier this year.
This was in the interests of “maximising cost efficiencies” and “reducing UKOG net costs”, the company said.
It reported in August 2021 that drilling assembly had become stuck in the B-3 well. Although the component was recovered, that section of well was considered unsuitable for onward drilling.
Drilling the sidetrack, to be called B-3S, has been delayed until after the completion of 2D seismic surveys.
The statement said work on the sidetrack is expected to start after interpretation of seismic data from the area. This will be “fast-tracked” and is due in the first quarter of 2022.
UKOG warned that seismic surveying in the area was challenging because of winter weather, the remote location and the landscape of steep slopes, river gorges and lakes.