The small South American nation of Guyana could become the continent`s second-largest oil producer thanks to the offshore discoveries made by Exxon Mobil, according to a new report.
With a partner in New York-based Hess Corp., Exxon Mobil is focusing on offshore Guyana perhaps more than anywhere else in the world outside of West Texas` booming Permian Basin.
A new report from the research firm Wood Mackenzie calls Exxon Mobil`s Guyana exploits one of the one of the most impressive exploration campaigns in recent times.
With a population of only about 750,000 people, Guyana is located next to the Venezuela, a previous oil power now in a deep decline from geopolitical and financial instability.
The report comes just after Exxon Mobil increased its reserve estimates offshore of Guyana by 25 percent after making a 10th discovery in the region. Exxon is continuing to explore in what`s called the deepwater Stabroek block.
"With 17 prospects still to drill, Stabroek is writing Guyana`s future," stated Luiz Hayum, a Latin American research analyst at Wood Mackenzie, arguing that Guyana could jump past all Latin American and South American countries except Brazil.
"If Venezuela and Mexico fail to address production declines, Guyana could quickly surpass them to number two," Hayum said.
Exxon Mobil said its new Pluma-1 well discovery coupled with increased projections from other findings have hiked their reserve estimate from 4 billion barrels of oil equivalent up to 5 billion.
The first oil production of 120,000 barrels a day is expected to come online in early 2020 through the Liza Phase 1 development. Liza Phase 2 is expected to start up by mid-2022.
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