A STOS spokesman says the exact decommissioning timing has yet to be confirmed, but that it could be as early as next summer.
“STOS believes the unit is still in very good condition and suitable for redeployment to other fields, with several fields coming up for development worldwide where a unit of this specification could potentially be used.”
Specialist offshore shipbrokers Kennedy Marr have been appointed to handle the sale process of the Whakaaropai on behalf of STOS and Maui partners Shell NZ, Todd Energy and OMV.
The UK-based company is approaching contractors and operators worldwide to make offers for the FPSO, a converted Suezmax tanker with a SOFEC-designed external turret, which can produce up to 44,000 barrels of oil per day.
The Whakaaropai _ New Zealand’s first FPSO _ was commissioned in 1996 after commercial oil was discovered in the Eocene-aged Kapuni F sands in the southern B lobe earlier that decade.
Earlier this year EnergyReview.Net said the imminent sale of the Whakaaropai could prove to be a bonus for the PEP 38460 partners as they contemplate the rapid development of the twin Tui-Amokura oil finds, and possibly the Pateke and Kiwi prospects. The Ocean Bounty is about to start the Pateke-2 well and then Kiwi-1.
A likely development scenario, from perhaps as early as 2006, is a series of directionally drilled wells, subsea completions and a FPSO to process and store the crude prior to offloading into tankers.
Tui-Amokura, with possibly Pateke-Kiwi, will produce from the same Kapuni F sands, which at Maui B flowed up to 37,000 bopd with horizontal production wells. Because of this high productivity, the size of recoverable reserves required to support a commercially attractive development is 20-30 million barrels.