Pará-Maranhão in focus

Source: Brasil Energia


By: Gabriela Medeiros



Enauta achieved good results in the evaluation of the 3D seismic survey conducted in blocks PAMA-M-265 and PAMA-M-337, in the Pará-Maranhão Basin. With 100% of the concessions after the exit of Pacific Rubiales from the projects, the Brazilian oil company is seeking a partner to drill a well in the region – a commitment that must be fulfilled by 2024.


The areas were auctioned off in the 11th round of the ANP, in 2013, but the company gained more time to complete the exploration phase due to the delay in environmental licensing in the Equatorial Margin.


“The Equatorial Margin is a border region, so for a small company like us, the idea is not to be alone in these areas,” explains Enauta’s CEO, Lincoln Guardado.


According to the executive, the farm-out in the blocks has generated interest in the market, attracting more companies than the sale of participation in its concession in Foz do Amazonas (FZA-M-90). The expectation is to conclude the operation by the end of this year.


“Until then there was little data on these areas. One of Foz’s characteristics is that large companies are already there, such as Total, BP and Petrobras, with a reasonably mapped prospection of the region. But in Pará-Maranhão, there aren’t many companies, so the basin arouses more interest because there is less knowledge”, explains the CEO.


Activities already carried out in the Pará-Maranhão Basin indicate the presence of light oil 


In addition to Enauta, only Petrobras has concessions in the basin: the PAMA-M-192 and PAMA-M-194 blocks were auctioned in the sixth round, but their contracts are suspended. The state-owned company even drilled a well in the Harpia prospect, which found oil in 2011, but since then, activities have been interrupted.



According to ANP, there are only 34 exploratory wells drilled in Pará-Maranhão, of which 25 were dry, without signs or were abandoned. Most of the drilling campaigns took place between the late 1970s and early 1990s, including a deepwater well.



There are still no fields under development or production in the basin, which is similar to the successfully tested oil systems in Sergipe-Alagoas, Guyana and the West African Margin. In the latter case, an example is the discovery of Jubilee, a prospect found on the coast of Ghana in 2007, with about 800 million recoverable barrels of oil.



Next year, operators will have the opportunity to purchase blocks in Pará-Maranhão, during ANP’s 17th Round. The last time the basin had assets offered was in 2013, and today the regulatory agency is considering the possibility of offering around 50 blocks in the region in future phases of the permanent offer system.



Faced with this scenario, seismic service providers have been intensifying mapping of the basin. In 2018, for example, Spectrum asked Ibama for permission to conduct a 2D campaign in Pará-Maranhão. The company already had knowledge of the basin, since, in 2015, it purchased 11,500 km of 2D data collected by Fugro.