bp and State Oil Company of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) signed a new production sharing agreement (PSA) on joint exploration and development of the Shafag-Asiman structure in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea on October 7 2010. This marked the beginning of BP’s bilateral cooperation with SOCAR in exploration and development of a new offshore block.
The signing of the PSA followed the earlier concluded Heads of Agreement (HOA) which defined the basic commercial principles of the contract. Under the PSA bp will be the operator with 50 per cent interest while SOCAR will hold the remaining 50 per cent equity.
The block lies some 125 kilometers (78 miles) to the South-East of Baku. It covers an area of some 1100 square kilometers and has never been explored before. It is located in a deepwater section of about 650-800 meters with reservoir depth of about 7000 meters.
Since early 2012 when the Gilavar seismic vessel completed the planned 3D seismic acquisition on the Shafag-Asiman structure, the first 3D seismic ever conducted on the contract area, we have been processing the acquired data. This processing is believed to be the largest 3D survey ever processed in-country. The data processing was completed and interpretation of the seismic dataset started during 2014.
The first exploration well was spudded on 13 January 2020. The drilling was completed in March 2021 to the base of the Fasila reservoir to a depth of 7,189 metres. The well encountered gas condensate resource in the penetrated reservoirs. However, the resource will need further evaluation and therefore it was decided to suspend the well to allow the evaluation of its results and the planning of the next steps for appraisal, potentially including a sidetrack appraisal well.