At least 15 more shale oil and gas wells will be drilled in Argentina's Patagonia Chubut province over the next three years, a provincial official said on Thursday, a day after its first shale discovery was made public.
Argentina's state-controlled energy company YPF announced Chubut's first shale oil and gas discovery on Wednesday in the San Jorge basin. It comes at a time of rising interest in the vast Vaca Muerta shale field in Neuquen province, also in southern Argentina.
There are a lot of areas available for exploration, Chubut's top energy official, Ezequiel Cufre, said.
YPF is set to drill 11 more wells over the coming three years, while local company Tecpetrol drills another four, Cufre said.
San Jorge is located more than 1,000 km southeast of Vaca Muerta, where U.S. energy major Exxon Mobil Corp this week said it made its first discovery of non-conventional gas and crude oil.
It was the first discovery at El Trebol field in the D-129 shale formation in Chubut.
Vaca Muerta field is thought to be one of the world's biggest shale reserves and could double Argentina's energy output within a decade.
The United States is the world leader in shale oil and shale gas reserves, and in related technology.
Testing of the nonconventional well in 'El Trebol' area, which would require fracking, showed potential for a flow of 770 barrels per day, the company said in a statement.
”It is a very important (potential) well, in terms of likely volume, on a par with the best (non-conventional) in the United States,” said industry expert Eduardo Barreiro.