Winners of Mexico blocks expect to drill initial wells within a year

Mexico's three licensing rounds so far all took place in 2015.
Mexico’s three licensing rounds so far all took place in 2015.

By Starr Spencer / Platts

The winners of acreage from the first three bidding rounds in Mexico last year are moving ahead on plans to develop oil from the country’s major energy reforms, with the first wells expected as early as fourth-quarter 2016, representatives of those companies said Tuesday.

Two of the operators, Talos Energy and Roma Energy Holdings, are US headquartered. The third, Mexico’s PetroBal, was formed last year by minerals magnate Alberto Bailleres, president of conglomerate Grupo Bal which owns the world’s largest silver producer.

PetroBal will drill its first well on its block, in Mexico’s Bay of Campeche, by year’s end with US partner Fieldwood Energy, Carlos Morales Gil, previously director general of E&P for Mexican state oil company Pemex, said at the Offshore Technology Conference.

After that, “we will analyze the well results, maybe drill a few more wells in 2017, and propose a development plan,” Gil said, adding first production will likely be in 2019.

Mexico’s three licensing rounds so far — actually, these were three phases of its Round One — all took place in 2015. A fourth phase featuring 10 deepwater blocks is planned for December. In addition, Roma Energy Holdings CEO Alexandro Rovirosa told Platts on the conference sidelines that it will drill its first well early next year on a block it won in a separate Mexico bidding last December.

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