The Production Sharing Agreement for the developments of Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) field, signed in 1994 was called the Contract of the Century, due to its importance to the region. Located about 100 km east of Baku, it’s operated by BP on behalf of the Azerbaijan International Operating Company (AIOC).
Operations at the ACG field started in November 1997 with the start-up of production from the Chirag-1 platform (Early Oil Project). Central, West and East Azeri complex were developed under Phases 1 and 2 and Deepwater Gunashli section was developed under Phase 3. ACG has a challenging geology with complicated seabed topography and it is the largest field under development in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian basin.
“My first project onshore involved drilling through a challenging geological structure right beneath the Central Azeri which called for some incredibly detailed planning and particularly extensive risk assessment. It was a complex project. Nothing like it had ever been tackled in Azerbaijan before. So we were in constant contact with the central well control team in Houston. It was also a brilliant way to boost my technical knowledge and set me up for all kinds of exciting challenges ahead.” Ruslan Ponomaryov, Drilling Engineer.