Croatia: New Adriatic gas discovery

, SEE Energy News

Based on 2019 data, about 40 % of domestic needs for natural gas and about 20 % of oil needs were met from domestic sources. Until relatively recently, Croatia was able to cover a maximum of 70 % of its gas needs from domestic sources, today it is rapidly declining and that is why it is important that INA continues with its activities in Croatia. Capital investments in exploration and production in 2020 in the country amounted to 46 million euros or 11 % more than a year earlier, of which, 6 million euros were invested in exploratory activities.

In previous years, following a tender by the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency (AZU), a number of concessionaires began exploration for oil and gas, and now the results are slowly showing.

The fact is that the extracted quantities of gas in northern Adriatic, which for years carried the majority of INA’s production, are rapidly declining – the decline from 2020 to 2019 was 23 %, while onshore it fell by 12 % over the same period. Stocks in the northern Adriatic are increasingly declining, and last year gas platform Ivana D was lost in an accident.

AZU Chairman Marijan Krpan said that the agency believes that there are still opportunities for several successful development wells in the northern Adriatic and that the exploration potential of the surrounding blocks requires a few more wells to definitively determine possible 2P and 3P potentials, i.e. how additional investments can activate a few billion cubic meters of gas.

He said that the incident with Ivana D platform overshadowed the fact that a few days earlier INA, in cooperation with Italian Edison, drilled a positive well Irena 2 South and discovered gas reserves in the amount of approximately 600 million cubic meters, the value of which exceeds the damage caused by the sinking of Ivana D. In any case, the production from the Adriatic is in a significant decline, which further emphasizes the justification of the realization of the Krk LNG project.

Krpan reminded that the onshore Severovci exploitation field is expected to be brought to production during 2023. These are new gas reserves that were explored during 2017/2018 at the DR-02 exploratory area, discovered by INA. INA has also submitted a report on the commercial discovery of the Jankovac oil field, and in the second half of 2023 it also plans to bring the Jankovac-1 well into production. Also, at the end of 2022, AZU expects the Berak and Ceric exploitation fields to be put into production. These are new gas reserves discovered by exploratory drilling in Eastern Slavonia in 2019 by Vermilion Energy, which continues 3D seismic surveys in the area.