Colombia has a very active independent oil and gas sector and provides excellent opportunities to build a core area for Avante Petroleum.
We are actively evaluating investment opportunities in several basins across the country and in both oil and gas production. Our objective is to build a highly profitable production-based business targeting low risk development projects or redevelopment of more mature or marginal fields.
RIO DE ORO AND PUERTO BARCO FIELDS
An agreement was signed in late 2005 for Avante Petroleum to acquire a 50% working interest in two concessions containing mature oil fields in the Catatumbo basin. Our partner in the concessions is Petrotesting, a private Colombian oil and gas company.
The Catatumbo basin is the southern-most extension of the Maracaibo basin of Venezuela, the second most petroliferous basin in the world according to the US Department of Energy and Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA). This sub-basin has produced over 800 million barrels of oil to-date from numerous fields.
During the course of 2006 Avante Petroleum started the redevelopment of the fields together with our partner. On April 15, 2008 Avante took over the operatorship of the concessions which are under contracts with Ecopetrol, the Colombian state oil company.
The initial plan is to re-open several wells which were producing when the fields were temporarily abandoned in 1999, in order to establish some early production, and fully assess the future potential. Subsequent to this a full field redevelopment plan is currently being implemented to raise the long term ultimate recovery. Both fields contain sweet, light oil of between 40 and 52 degree API.