Molecular Energies has spudded its Tapir x-1 exploration well in Paraguay, targeting a potential of more than 260 million barrels of oil.
The company acquired 3D seismic on the area in 2013-14. It will drill the well to a depth of around 3,800 metres, with an estimated drilling time of 45 days.
Data show the Tapir prospect has a four-way dip closure with seal. It is around 40 km from the Palmar Largo field in Argentina. The company has put the chance of success at 17%, largely as a result of fears around migtation.
Molecular has a 50% stake in the Pirity concession and is the operator. OPIC, backed by Taiwan’s CPC, holds the remaining 50%.
Even if recovery is low, Molecular said the well is “compelling to drill”. There are royalty rates of 10-14%, it said, and profit taxes of 10%. The company plans to provide an update in around 45 days on reaching target depth.
Molecular has repeatedly pushed back drilling on the Paraguay well. It was nearly ready to begin in September but ran into problems with its blow out preventer (BOP).
The BOP had to be repaired, in Brazil, and then moving the equipment through customs proved to be a lengthy process.
Molecular sold off its Argentine assets in 2023, to its chairman, Peter Levine, amid concerns on the country’s economy. The company said it had received a first payment on its inter-company loan. The total outstanding was $13 million and it has now received $500,000.
Whatever the results of the Paraguay well, Molecular is planning to move further into the green and alternative energy space. It aims to act as an investment and trading house, it has said.
Molecular also has a stake in an alternative energy company, Green House Capital. It expects to hold an OPO for this in the first quarter of the year.
The company has a number of other plans it is working on, including synthetic aviation fuel (SAF), and has a stake in green fertiliser company Atome Energy.