UPDATED AT 4PM 22 OCT 2023: Readers note- The Invictus Energy company has protested saying: “This story is highly premature and incorrect as we are currently still drilling. As stated in our release to the ASX on Friday available on our website, we are still drilling towards our total depth of 3,750m and once completed we will then attempt to retrieve a fluid sample via wireline which can only be run once drilling has concluded.”
The Australian energy exploration company, INVICTUS ENERGY, has encountered a setback in its quest to confirm a highly anticipated oil discovery in the northern region of Zimbabwe. The company, which had previously announced promising findings in its search for oil and gas, now faces hurdles in providing the crucial evidence needed to declare a commercial discovery.
INVICTUS ENERGY’s exploration efforts in Zimbabwe’s Cabora Bassa Basin have generated preliminary data supporting the existence of a viable petroleum system, encompassing active source rock and related oil and gas accumulations. The company has been actively drilling its second exploration well at the Mukuyu-2 site in the Mbire district, Mashonaland Central province, with the goal of reaching a depth of 3,750 meters within a targeted timeframe of 50 to 60 days.
A previous drilling endeavor in September of the previous year yielded positive results, reinforcing the presence of a functional hydrocarbons system in the prospective area. However, despite these encouraging findings, technical complications during the drilling process prevented INVICTUS ENERGY from recovering a fluid sample, a requirement imposed by Australian regulators, where the company is listed, to declare a commercial discovery.
Sample recovery is an essential procedure that allows stakeholders to assess the consistency of a portion of the object under investigation, determining its representativeness.
The potential commercial discovery of oil and gas in Zimbabwe carries significant implications. It could bring about energy security for a nation that has grappled with persistent power shortages, create jobs, stimulate new industries, and bolster export revenues. President Mnangagwa, during a development framework agreement signing event in March 2021, emphasized the multifaceted benefits of such a discovery, including electricity generation, liquid petroleum production, liquefied petroleum gas, fertilizer, and petrochemicals.
INVICTUS ENERGY has reported that the background gas at Mukuyu-2 surpasses that observed at Mukuyu-1, and heavier hydrocarbons have been detected, providing further evidence of an active petroleum system in the basin. Their Mukuyu conventional gas-condensate prospect is touted as the largest undrilled onshore prospect in Africa, with estimated reserves of over 20 trillion cubic feet and 845 million barrels on a gross mean unrisked basis.
The company expressed optimism about their Upper Angwa primary target, citing elevated gas readings, including heavier hydrocarbons and heightened LWD resistivity across the zones of interest. Resistivity logs, obtained through measurement tools, offer insights into a formation’s fluid saturation, rock type, porosity, fluid type, and fluid volume, which are crucial for identifying permeable areas and estimating porosity and fluid saturation in the formation.
The failure to recover a fluid sample is a significant setback for INVICTUS ENERGY, as the confirmation of a commercial discovery would have far-reaching consequences for Zimbabwe’s energy landscape and its economy. The company is likely to regroup and explore alternative approaches to provide the necessary evidence for their groundbreaking findings in the pursuit of energy security and economic growth.- state media/agencies