Maersk Strikes Oil at Angola’s First Pre-Salt Deepwater Well

Maersk (MAERSKB) Oil, the Nordic region’s second-largest producer, reported the first discovery in Angola’s deep-sea pre-salt region.

The Azul-1 well in the Kwanza Basin was drilled to a depth of 5,334 meters (17,500 feet) and was found to have a potential capacity of more than 3,000 barrels a day, Copenhagen-based Maersk (MAERSKB) said today in a statement. Further appraisal work is needed, said Lars Nydahl Jorgensen, its head of exploration.

BP Plc (BP/) and Statoil ASA (STL) were among oil producers awarded rights last month to explore for oil and gas in Angola’s pre- salt blocks, which may share the same characteristics as fields in Brazil. Drilling pre-salt wells is technically challenging because the deposits lie below a layer of salt, which is difficult to penetrate and identify potential oil fields.

“The real significance of this well is that is shows us that the pre-salt in this part of the Atlantic” works, Jorgensen said in a phone interview. “We now have a lot of data that we didn’t have before.”

The well test that was carried out “enabled the recovery of two good quality oil samples,” the oil unit of A.P. Moeller- Maersk A/S, Denmark’s biggest company, said.

Svenska Petroleum Exploration AB and Angola’s state-owned oil company Sonangol EP are Maersk’s partners in the Azul-1 well.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eduard Gismatullin in London at egismatullin@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at wkennedy3@bloomberg.net

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