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EPI to support GNPC seismic exploration of Voltaian basin

Two-year contract to assess feasibility of 104,000km area and kick-start onshore exploration in Ghana.

EPI Group (EPI) Ghanaian Joint Venture Company – EPI SonarTusk – has signed a contract to provide project management consultancy to support seismic exploration by Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) in the Voltaian Basin. The two-year contract will see EPI support the first onshore exploration in Ghana for nearly 40 years, and is intended to acquire a regional 2D seismic programme within the 104,000 km² basin.

The Voltaian Basin covers approximately 40 per cent of Ghana’s land mass. It is a sedimentary Neoproterozoic basin, with a number of similarities to areas in North Africa and elsewhere, which are already producing significant volumes of hydrocarbons. Exploration in such a basin carries higher risk than most conventional petroleum plays because of its age and probable geological history. Adding to the challenge is the basin being home to the Volta Lake – the world’s largest man-made lake by surface area.

Alexander Kofi-Mensah Mould, acting chief executive of GNPC, says: “Given the risks associated with the industry, and an onshore area for that matter, we selected EPI to manage our seismic project work because of their proven expertise in seismic exploration. We want to explore and better understand the basin and its potential for development before inviting partners to join us. We are looking forward to working together in close partnership.”

Under the terms of the contract EPI will bring together a team of project managers, geophysicists, surveyors, QC consultants and environmentalists to define the scope of work to be carried out. It will then manage a tender process, from creating tender documents, evaluating bids from acquisition companies, and assisting GNPC in the selection and supervision of the chosen contractors. EPI will additionally develop the scope of work to process and manipulate the acquired seismic data, and support GNPC in the selection and supervision of contractors.

Edward Bowen, CEO at EPI, adds: “The goal of the project is to produce a geological model of the basin in terms of stratigraphy, structure and petroleum geology. We will help GNPC to achieve this through an extensive programme of support and knowledge transfer.

A project of this size and complexity is a rare opportunity, and we are delighted to be involved in such a technically-challenging but rewarding project, supporting GNPC in its efforts to develop its extensive onshore resources.”

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