Sunday, October 21, 2007

Vanco: Ukraine opens deepwater Black Sea


An interesting article about the Ukraine and their oil and gas industry, shows that another small company is leading the way in developing new areas for exploration.


The government of Ukraine has signed the "Prykerchenska Production Sharing Agreement" with Vanco Energy Co. This agreement gives Vanco the opportunity to explore the deepwater part of Ukraine's Black Sea and to develop the Prykerchenska block (I've attached a map).
This effort came to fruition this month (October 2007) after over a year and half of negotiations with the government and all parties involved. There were setbacks, but this is attributed to the Ukraine negotiating their first Production Sharing Agreement and the length of the agreement. The agreement has a 30 year term and will allow Vanco to start exploration and eventually build production facilities.
For the Ukraine, this is one method of solving Ukraine’s energy needs and it could help the country fulfill its goal of producing 25 percent more gas within the next 20 years.

The Kremlin in the past has unexpectedly doubled the price Ukraine pays for gas at the border in 2006 and then raised it again by a third this year. The Kremlin seems intent on making it's former member states pay more for their energy needs.
The Ukraine is actively pushing for exploration to sever the ties and is working with other Western Based companies to do this. Recently this year, on June 5, 2007, Ukraine’s state-owned oil and gas company Naftogaz Ukrainy and a subsidiary of the US-based Marathon Oil Corporation inked a cooperation agreement to explore for hydrocarbon deposits in the country’s Dnipro-Donets Basin, which supplies Ukraine with 80 percent of its hydrocarbons and is believed to contain natural gas deposits deep below those being exploited
Vanco is unique in that it has been dedicated to international deepwater exploration since 1996. This company has succesfully operated offshore drilling programs in Morocco and C├┤te d'Ivoire in the last three years. In addition to Ukraine, the Houston independent has deepwater exploration programs offshore Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana and Cote d'Ivoire.

This is an interesting story of an ambitious company and how local politics and want or a desire for independence can lead to opportunities for a nation and explorers.

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