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Simba Energy estimates 437 million barrels of oil at Wajir block

Oil exploration in northern Kenya. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Oil exploration in northern Kenya. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Canadian firm Simba Energy plans to drill its first exploratory oil well in Wajir, northern Kenya, next year with the preliminary evaluation putting the potential at over 400 million barrels.

The Toronto Stock Exchange (TSE)-listed exploration firm Tuesday said its consultant, Sproule International, had completed an assessment report of block 2A, identifying 29 leads ahead of exploration drilling.

“In total, Sproule puts the gross unrisked undiscovered petroleum initially in-place at 437.7 MMboe (million barrels of oil or equivalent),” said the firm in a regulatory notice.

Simba said it planned to sink an exploration well of around 3,000 metres next year in block 2A to test two or more intervals (depths).

Sproule is familiar with East Africa rift systems and has already interpreted all available seismic and well data in the region surrounding the block in the Mandera basin.

“The portion of the Mandera basin underlying block 2A is prospective as it exhibits a petroleum system with a trend of improving reservoir quality upward in the possible hydrocarbon-bearing leads and prospects,” said Simba.

The company said it is mulling additional seismic surveys to further detail prospects and to select the best location for drilling.

The aim is to develop a dual- or triple-prospect location, it said.

Oil and gas explorers use seismic surveys to produce detailed images of the various rock types and the location beneath the earth’s surface and to determine the location and size of oil and gas reservoirs.

The Canadian firm recently raised Sh213 million in a private placement for use in the exploration activities in Kenya.