In spring 2018, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources of the Republic of Indonesia approved the development plan for the field within the production sharing contract (PSC) in East Sepinggan, offshore of East Kalimantan, which was then converted into a Gross Split PSC in December 2018. The investment plan was authorised by our Board of Directors in December of the same year. The field is 1,500 m deep and about 35 km south-west of the Jangkrik floating production unit (FPU). In December 2018 we drilled and tested the exploration prospect Merakes East, in the East Sepinggan block, offshore of Kalimantan in Indonesia, 33 km south-east of the Jangkrik floating production unit (FPU) and 3 km east of the Merakes field. The well was drilled 1,592 m under water, reaching a total depth of 3,400 m and coming up against a net 15 m of sand that yielded gas, in two separate layers from the Miocene age. The production test, which was limited by surface infrastructure, indicated the reservoir was highly productive and gave us all the necessary data to do a mineral assessment of the discovery.
In 2019-2020 development activities are related to the offshore Merakes gas project in the operated East Sepinggan block (Eni’s interest 65%). The project foresees the drilling and the completion of five subsea wells, which will be tie-back to the Floating Production Unit (FPU) of the Jangkrik producing field (Eni operator with a 55% interest). In April 2021 we started gas production from the project. The five deep-water subsea wells will guarantee a production capacity of 450 million standard cubic feet per day (MMSCFD), equivalent to 85,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (BOED). The field has been connected to the Jangkrik Floating Production Unit (FPU). The gas produced from Merakes is exported through subsea pipelines to the Jangkrik FPU. After being processed the gas is exported to the Onshore Receiving Facility (ORF) in Senipah via the existing Jangkrik export pipelines. Merakes gas will be partially sold to the domestic market and will also contribute to the extension of the life of the Bontang LNG facility, one of the most reliable LNG processing plants in the world, that supplies liquefied natural gas to both the domestic and export markets.