(Updates with board member comments in third paragraph, share price in sixth.)
Nov. 2 (Bloomberg) -- OMV Petrom SA’s daily gas production may rise about 3 percent after the company said a field in southwest Romania may contain the largest onshore gas deposit found in the past six years.
The discovery in the Totea field in southwestern Romania came after a drilling test confirmed the deposits, the company said in a statement sent to the Bucharest Stock Exchange today. It plans to drill two appraisal wells to get additional information about the field’s potential.
“We started the test exploitation in record time and we are currently preparing the spud for the first appraisal well,” Johann Pleininger, Petrom’s executive board member responsible for exploration and production, said in the statement. “The appraisal might confirm the largest onshore gas discovery in Romania in the past six years.”
Romania’s largest oil company has been investing about 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) a year, mainly in exploration and production, to mitigate a natural decline in oil and gas production from its mature fields. The company’s production declined 1.6 percent in the third quarter to 184,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day from 187,000 barrels in the previous three months.
The Totea field has current production of approximately 3,200 barrels of oil equivalent a day and may boost Petrom’s total gas output in the country from 91,700 barrels of oil equivalent last year, according to a statement.
Experimental production in the Totea field is estimated to start in December and will last for about six to 12 months, Petrom said. The well was put in production after about 3 months from the discovery, Petrom said in the statement.
Petrom’s shares fell 1.5 percent to 0.2955 lei at 1:03 p.m. in Bucharest trading today. That values Romania’s biggest oil company at 16.7 billion lei ($5.3 billion).
--Editors: James M. Gomez, Douglas Lytle
To contact the reporters on this story: Andra Timu in Bucharest at firstname.lastname@example.org; Irina Savu in Bucharest at email@example.com
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