Malaysia’s state energy company Petronas has awarded two production-sharing contracts (PSCs) for offshore Blocks PM311 and PM312 to Murphy Oil Corporation and upstream subsidiary Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd. The PSCs mark the fifth and sixth Malaysian blocks awarded to Murphy Oil, a US-based independent oil company.

Murphy Oil will have a 75% interest in each of the two blocks, with Petronas Carigali owning the remaining 25%. Murphy Oil will operate the two blocks.

Blocks PM311 and PM312, with a combined area of about 11,000 square kilometres, are located northeast offshore Terengganu state. Under the terms of the PSC, Murphy Oil will acquire and reprocess 250 square kilometres of 3D seismic data and 2,500 line kilometres of 2D seismic data for each block. The operator will also drill two exploration wells in each block.

The blocks, previously operated by Esso Production Malaysia Incorporated (EPMI), have been identified to possess attractive oil and gas potential. A gas field, the Bundi Complex, was discovered in Block PM311 by EPMI before relinquishing the block. With its new drilling concept and vast experience, Murphy Oil will look into the stratigraphic and deeper plays to evaluate the prospectivity of both blocks.

Murphy Oil is an integrated oil and gas company with operations in the US, UK, South America, Canada, China, Spain, Pakistan and the Philippines. The company made its debut in Malaysia’s upstream sector in 1999 when it was awarded Blocks SK309 and SK311 offshore Sarawak and the Deepwater Block K offshore Sabah. In 2001, it took over the deepwater Block H, also offshore Sabah, from EPMI.