The Next South American Oil Giant

  • Sep 14, 2021
  • Investing

Industry consultancy Rystad Energy estimates that the five discoveries made in offshore Suriname up until the end of June 2021 hold recoverable oil resources of up to 1.9 billion barrels of crude oil.

At the June 2021 Suriname Energy, Oil and Gas Summit Apache’s Vice President Global Geoscience and Portfolio Management Eric Vosburgh stated; “What I would say is that the ultimate scale of the resource and production potential is big. I think I need a word bigger than big, but it’s big.” Apache and partner TotalEnergies are committed to developing Block 58. At the start of 2021, Apache announced that most of its annual $200 million exploration budget will be directed toward drilling in Suriname. TotalEnergies set a 2021 exploration budget allocated $800 million with the energy supermajor devoting a third of its exploration appraisal activities to Block 58.

While plans to develop the block have yet to be released TotalEnergies and Apache are expected to make their final investment decision during mid-2022 and work toward first oil by 2025. Suriname’s national oil company and industry regulator Staatsolie has the right to farm into Block 58 and take up to a 20% stake, which would see it liable for $1 billion to $1.5 billion in development costs. Paramaribo is also focused on attracting further energy investment in Suriname recently awarding three shallow-water blocks to foreign energy supermajors. TotalEnergies and partner Qatar Petroleum won Blocks 6 and 8, which are adjacent to Block 58, and Chevron was awarded Block 5. That region is underexplored and thought to possess considerable petroleum potential.