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2021

Sep 2021: The Autoridade Nacional do Petroleo e Minerais (ANPM) will extend the timeline of the closing of the 2nd Licensing Round bid submission to March 2022 with pre-qualification in January 2022. A total of 18 new blocks are on offer with 7 onshore (Blocks A to G) and 11 blocks offshore (Blocks H-R).

Jul 2021: Santos (operator, 43.4%), SK E&S (25%), INPEX (11.4%), Eni (11%), JERA (6.1%), and Tokyo Gas (3.1%) announced that production from the Phase 3C infill drilling program at the Bayu-Undan field has begun. The first well has been brought online at 1.8 bcm of gas per year (to Darwin LNG) and 11,350 bbls per day of oil.

Mar 2021: Timor GAP, the NOC,is studying the establishment of an LNG import terminal and conversion of its light fuel oil power plants (Hera and Betano), installed in 2011, to run on natural gas. A 3rd facility, Inur Sakato (Oe-Cusse), set up in 2015, can be re-configured to run on gas.

Jan 2021: Santos (operator, 68.4%) announced an FID for the US$235 mm Phase 3C infill drilling program at the Bayu-Undan field in the Timor Sea. The program comprises 3 production wells to be drilled from 2Q 2021, adding over 20 mm bbls of oil equivalent reserves, extending field life and reducing the time Darwin LNG is offline before the Barossa project comes onstream.

2020

Dec 2020: Carnarvon (operator) will drill the Buffalo-10 well in late 2021 funded by Advance for up to 50% equity. The well will target attic oil in the Elang Formation in permit WA-523-P Buffalo Field and will be completed as a production well. Buffalo was discovered by BHP in 1996 and developed in 1999 with 4 wells and an unmanned WH platform in 25m of water, tied back to an FPSO. Abandoned in 2004, the field is being redeveloped.

Oct 2020: Santos is working on plans for a further phase of infill drilling at the Bayu-Undan field in the Timor Sea. The program will comprise 3 development wells to extend field life and production at the onshore Darwin LNG complex. Santos is targeting an FID by the end of 2020.

Jun 2020: TGS, with ANPM announced that it has commenced an offshore 2D cubed data project in support of the ongoing license round. It combines all available open file and TGS multi-client data across an area of over 50,000 sq kms. Availability of first deliverables is expected from July 2020.

Apr 2020: Baron Oil has executed a Shareholders' Agreement with SundaGas Resources regarding the offshore TL-SO-19-16 Chuditch PSC. Baron now has a 33.33% shareholding with Sunda Gas holding the remainder. SundaGas is reprocessing existing 2D and 3D seismic data and will then consider a location for the commitment well due in the 3rd of the initial term.

Mar 2020: Searcher Seismic has an agreement with the Petroleum Authority (ANPM) for its Offshore Data and Study Package. With Discover Geoscience it has prepared a package of seismic and well data for evaluation of the 2nd petroleum licensing round. On offer are 19 offshore blocks.

2019

Nov 2019: The ANPM, representing the State, has signed PSC TL-SO-19-16 with SundaGas (operator, 75%) and Timor Gap (25%, the NOC). It contains the Chuditch gas discovery 100 kms east of the Bayu-Undan field and 50 kms south of the planned Greater Sunrise development. The PSC lies in the south of the former JPDA.  

Oct 2019: The Government has launched a licensing round for oil and gas exploration of 18 blocks in the wake of the maritime border treaty with Australia. This is the 2nd licensing round after the first in 2005. Seven of the blocks are onshore and 11 are offshore.

Sep 2019: All joint venture partners have signed agreements supporting the maritime boundary and agreeing to the Bayu-Undan gas project operating in Timor Leste’s maritime jurisdiction under the same terms terms. The Bayu-Undan to Darwin Pipeline is subject to Australia’s jurisdiction. The Buffalo field will also transfer to Timor Leste while the Greater Sunrise field will be jointly developed.

Apr 2019: ConocoPhillips has sold its 30% of the Greater Sunrise fields (Sunrise and Troubadour) to the government for US$350mm (PSCs 03-19 and 03-20, Retention Leases NT/RL2 and NT/RL4). Timor Leste previously purchased Shell’s 26.56% for US$300mm.

2018

Dec 2018: Santos (11.5%) announced first gas from the final well of the ConocoPhillips-operated Bayu Undan gas/condensate project infill well program. Drilling consisted of two platform wells and one subsea well.

Oct 2018: Timor Leste is to buy ConocoPhillips 30% in the Greater Sunrise fields in the Timor Sea for US$350mm, comprising the Sunrise and Troubadour gas and condensate fields 150 kms southeast of Timor Leste and 450 kms northwest of Darwin. The plan is to monetise Sunrise through an onshore LNG development in Timor Leste to replace declining revenues from the Bayu Undan field.

May 2018: Carnarvon Petroleum is planning to drill the first production well, Buffalo-10, in the redevelopment of the Buffalo field in WA-523-P in 25m of water. The previously developed portion of the field was producing around 4,000 bbls of oil per day when it was shut in. The development consists of a WH platform connected to a leased FPSO with 3 wells producing 31 mm bbls.

Mar 2018: Carnarvon’s 100% owned WA-523-P permit Buffalo oil field will now fall within Timor Leste’s exclusive jurisdiction. Special legislation will be enacted to ensure the redevelopment will proceed under equivalent fiscal terms. The field was discovered by BHP in 1996 and was developed with 4 wells and an unmanned WH platform in 25m of water tied back to an FPSO.

Mar 2018: A treaty on a permanent maritime border in the Timor Sea has now been signed, setting out the maritime border at the midway point between the countries. Timor Leste will receive at least 70% (80% if gas is processed in Australia) of the revenue from Greater Sunrise. Australia will also lose jurisdiction in oil fields currently shared.

Feb 2018: An agreement has now been reached for a treaty on the disputed maritime border and on a pathway to develop the giant Greater Sunrise offshore gas field. The share of revenue will differ depending on downstream benefits that arise from different development concepts.

2017

Sep 2017: Agreement on a maritime border with Australia has been reached in The Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague. Details will remain confidential until the deal is finalised. The countries are to establish a special regime for the Greater Sunrise field owned by Woodside, ConocoPhillips, Shell and Osaka Gas and estimated to hold 144 bcm of gas and 226 mm bbls of condensate.

Apr 2017: Autoridade Nacional Do Petroleo e Minerais Timor Leste (ANPM) awarded onshore PSCs, TL-OT-17-08 and TL-OT-17-09, to Timor Gap EP and Timor Resources PTY LTD.

Jan 2017: An oil revenue treaty with Australia has been terminated as a step towards ending the maritime border dispute that prevents development of the Greater Sunrise fields. The existing boundary is aligned with Australia's continental shelf but Timor Leste argues it should lie half way, putting more of the Greater Sunrise field under its jurisdiction.

2016

No significant news in 2016.

2015

May 2015: Amec Foster Wheeler was awarded a pre-FEED contract for the proposed Beaço LNG plant in consultation with Timor Gap, the National Oil Company. Timor Gap, is managing implementation of the Tasi Mane project , comprising 3 development clusters along the south coast; the Suai supply base, the Betano refinery and the Beaço LNG plant.

Feb 2015: Woodside doubts its Greater Sunrise gas development will go ahead until after 2020. The obstacle remains the negotiations with Australia over sharing revenue. Greater Sunrise is 33% owned by Woodside, the operator with ConocoPhillips, Shell and Osaka Gas.

Feb 2015: The country intends to commence a pre-qualification round for onshore acreage in the middle of 2015 with award of PSCs scheduled for the second half of 2015. There is 85% open acreage offshore in the TLEA and more than 65% open acreage in the JPDA whilst no onshore blocks have yet been offered for exploration.

2014

Nov 2014: Woodside s in talks with the government about building an onshore LNG plant for the Greater Sunrise Project rather than a floating option. The fields are estimated to contain 150 bcm of gas and 226 mm bbls of condensate. Woodside is operator with 33% , along with ConocoPhillips (30%), Shell (26.6%) and Osaka Gas (10%).

Nov 2014: Foreign judges have been ordered out of the country after a court ruled for ConocoPhillips, operator of the Bayu Undan gas field, in a dispute over tax payments. Meanwhile talks are ongoing with Australia to resolve the dispute over the treaty giving East Timor 50% of revenue from the undeveloped Greater Sunrise fields operated by Woodside.

2013

Apr 2013: Eni has been awarded a new PSC in the Timor Sea with a water depth of 350m, adjacent to the offshore Kitan field. The PSC requires 2 exploration wells during the first 2 years. It lies within the Joint Petroleum Development Area administered by Australia and Timor Leste. The Kitan field, operated by Eni, was discovered in 2008 and started production in 2011.

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