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The first wells drilled offshore French Guiana were in 1975 and 1978 on the Demerara Rise. Both were dry holes. After a long break Tullow acquired the Guyane Maritime licence covering an extensive offshore area along the continental slope. This was part of the acquisition Hardman Resources in 2007.
In 2009, Tullow farmed out a substantial interest to Shell and Total and a further interest to Shell and operatorship in 2010. A 2,500 sq km 3D seismic programme had begun in September 2009 targeting the Eastern Slope section of the licence where leads matching the Jubilee field in Ghana were identified. The first well, Zaedyus-1, was commenced in March 2011.
This well proved that similarities with West Africa were present. It encountered 72m of net oil pay in high quality reservoir intervals - a turbidite sand called the Cingulata sand system. However a further four wells (3 appraisal and 1 exploration) in 2012 and 2013 were unsuccessful. No drilling has been conducted since November 2013.
Owing to these later failures and the lower oil price, Globalshift forecasts no new oil or gas production from the country in the short and medium term.
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