Melbana Energy (ASX:MAY) has recently updated the exploration potential of its onshore Block 9 in Cuba to 12.5 billion barrels of oil-in-place with prospective resources of 637 million barrels of oil.
The 100% owned Block 9 production sharing contract (PSC) is a large, 2380 square kilometre block located along trend from the multi-billion barrel Varadero oil field.
A prospectivity assessment undertaken by Melbana in 2016 and upgraded in February 2017 confirmed Block 9 as one of the world’s most exciting exploration plays.
The prospectivity assessment also identified 19 individual prospects and leads which Melbana has been prioritising to focus on the highest impact, lowest risk drill opportunities.
Melbana’s highest ranked drilling opportunity is the proposed Alameda-1 well which will test an exploration potential of over 2.5 billion barrels of oil-in-place and 130 million barrels of recoverable oil.
The most recent increase in the assessed exploration potential is due to the identification of the U1 lead, a shallow structure with a prospective recoverable resource of 25 million barrels of oil.
Melbana is now focusing on detailed planning for a drilling campaign in Block 9 PSC.
The company’s objective is to accelerate the drilling of two wells in Block 9 PSC during the first half of 2018.
Based on Melbana’s current estimates, a two-well campaign would cost in the range of US$20-30 million
Cuba’s reported current production is around 45,000 barrels per day of oil and 3 million cubic metres per day of gas.
Importantly, operators in Cuba incur globally competitive operating costs of circa US$7 per barrel.
MEO Australia changed to Melbana Energy in November 2016, changing its ASX ticker code from MEO to MAY.