Behind the scenes with Carnarvon’s new Chairman
The recent AGM provided an opportunity to meet and engage with many of our shareholders. It also gave the Board and Executive team an opportunity to further affirm the Company’s plans, outlook and vision for the new year that’s fast approaching.
The AGM also provided an opportunity to introduce our recently appointed Chairman Bill Foster. This is obviously an exciting time for the Company as we transition under new leadership towards becoming a viable energy producer. Following is a brief Q&A with Bill on key Company projects.
Question 1: Our much publicised Dorado field continues to generate excitement and interest – from both the investment markets and the broader energy sector – what’s your vision for this world class asset?
Answer 1: The Dorado project is one of the best oil field investment opportunities that I have seen in my career. Given its size, location and the economics, it’s a project we know can create considerable value for all shareholders. Our joint venture partnership with Santos, the second largest energy producer in Australia, continues seamlessly as we work to progress the project towards production. As operator, Santos has taken development planning to a stage where FEED entry is imminent. This includes finalising the selection of the preferred contractor for the wellhead platform and the FPSO vessel. Carnarvon is now beginning to plan for its financing aspects of the project. The next nine months will see additional detailed planning and engineering activity take place to enable us to make a financial commitment to development in the latter half of 2021.
Question 2: Beyond Dorado, we also have a great diversity of other assets we’re excited about. What can shareholders expect to see happen across our larger portfolio?
Answer 2: In addition to our focus on Dorado, we have pushed ahead with our other portfolio of projects and assets. The Bedout sub-basin is growing into an exciting new province and we are keen to carry out further testing. I’m very supportive of us drilling next year and I’m comfortable with how our Management team are advancing this with Santos. The highly attractive prospects of Apus and Pavo continue to be assessed with a view to these being our lead drilling targets in our next campaign. But there are a large number of additional prospects and new play types evolving that I believe will mature into equally exciting targets in the future. Beyond the Bedout Basin we are progressing the evaluation of our other licences and I continue to support our team’s continuing evaluation of new opportunities for further licence acquisitions.
Question 3: Buffalo is a valuable project, what will the Board focus on to continue its development?
Answer 3: Towards the end of 2019, Carnarvon, along with the governments of Australia and Timor-Leste, agreed the transition of the Buffalo project with the previous commercial terms of the licence being maintained. Buffalo progress is set in two core streams. The first is the commercial aspect, which is looking to secure a joint venture partner who will support the funding of the drilling and development activities. And the second is to progress towards drilling a new well in the second half of 2021 and following success to bring the field into production as soon as possible under Carnarvon operatorship. Pleasingly, with a renewed positive outlook for the oil and gas market globally, complemented by recent media reports of a COVID-19 vaccine, interest from potential JV partners has been reignited.