Paydirt for Jan. 22, 2018: Tapping into big energy potential: Shell begins drilling Shpirag-4 well in Albania

2018.01.22 PNN Paydirt Shell Shpirag-4.jpg

In nearby Velca Block, Pennine’s geophysical team is poring over data

Albania is said to have more than 220 million barrels of largely untapped oil reserves.

But as announcements like Shell’s earlier this month continue, those resources seem more and more within reach.

Shell Albania Upstream, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell, has begun drilling its Shpirag-4 appraisal well in south-central Albania, according to a Jan. 8 news release from the National Agency of Natural Resources (AKBN).

Shpirag-4 is the fourth well drilled by Shell targeting the Shpirag deposit, which lies within the Block 2 and 3 concessions operated by Shell.

“The Shpirag-4 announcement is yet another encouraging sign that the Albanian government is serious about establishing and maintaining a program of safe and responsible natural resource development,” says Pennine Petroleum Corporation (TSX-V: PNN) CEO and Director N. Desmond Smith.

Just last month, AKBN director Adrian Bylyku announced that AKBN had reached a deal with Shell on Block 4.

Pennine’s own Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) for the nearby Velca Block, given final approval in late November, had been the first new oil exploration agreement signed in Albania since 2009.

“We have a geophysical team engaged and working on geotechnical data—examining it, reprocessing it, integrating it—so we can select a drill target and get drilling operations underway,” says Mr. Smith.