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Petronas Suriname: Passionate about Progress

Petronas Suriname E&P B.V. (Petronas Suriname) is a fully owned subsidiary of the international energy group Petronas, which encapsulates the global company’s operations in Suriname to increase energy potential and optimise the value of the energy industry. Petronas’ energy operations can be broken down into three core businesses: upstream, gas and downstream. These divisions span the company’s portfolio of energy solutions which covers oil and gas, renewable sources, advanced products, and adaptive solutions. Throughout every aspect of its global operations, Petronas has embedded a culture of duty and respect for the planet. This respect for the environment has been implemented firmly throughout its Petronas Suriname subsidiary as it works to bring continued economic development to the region, stable energy, and the development of renewable energy options.  

For Petronas, Suriname is a key place for exploration as the country and its surrounding waters have already seen vast discoveries of oil and gas field potential in the region. Therefore, the development of Petronas to its Surinamese subsidiary was an easy decision to harness the potential of the region and continues to expand Petronas’ reach across the world. Consequently, Petronas already have a range of exploration blocks of which it either has full or split participating ownership of.  

A crucial development for the company in recent months is the discovery of the Roystonea-1 exploration in the existing Block 52. The discovery is for oil in the block, located 185 kilometres off the country’s coast in a well at a depth of 904 metres. The oil potential was discovered after encountering several oil-bearing Campanian sandstone reservoir packages, which could provide the company with great oil resources. Further evaluation of the well’s resources is currently being conducted to determine the full extent of the discovery. The potential development could work in synergy with the existing Sloanea-1 discovery which was made in the same block in 2020 and could bring significant oil resources to the region.   

Mohd Redhani Abdul Rahman, Vice President of Exploration at Petronas, highlights that “The success of Roystonea-1 is expected to drive further exploration for commercially viable hydrocarbon resources in the surrounding areas. Petronas will continue to work closely with the host authority Staatsoli and partners to unlock Suriname’s hydrocarbon potential. We look forward to implementing safe and successful future exploration programs together”. Rahman’s comments highlight the key role Petronas Suriname plays across the region by working with vital stakeholders and companies such as Staatsoli Maatschappij Suriname (Staatsoli), a key oil and gold company in the region, to deliver vital development and investment towards the country’s energy sector. Rahman’s comments also highlight the vital role hydrocarbon resources will play in serving energy demands as the world moves towards more sustainable energy options.  

Block 52, in which the discovery was made, covers an area of 4,749sq km and lies in the prospective Suriname-Guyana basin where Petronas Suriname is the central operator, with a 50% participating interest. However, Petronas’ operations in the region do not end there as the company also has a 100% participating interest in Block 48, as well as a 30% non-operating participating interest in the adjacent Block 53 where the company made the Baja-1 oil discovery in 2022. The continued involvement of Petronas Suriname in crucial development blocks off the coast of Suriname has highlighted its ongoing efforts towards ensuring energy security for the future as energy demands continue to increase at a rapid pace.  

In December last year, Petronas Suriname signed a Production Sharing Contract with Staatsolie for the exploration of Blocks 63 and 64 located in the Guyana-Suriname Basin. The signing came during the Suriname Demerara Bid Round 2022-2023 earlier last year. Block 63 covers an area of 5,425 sq km and is at a water depth of 1,700m, whereas Block 64 is shallower at only 1,300m deep. Here, Petronas Suriname has a 100% participating interest in and is the operator of Block 63. Block 64, on the other hand, is operated by TotalEnergies who have a 40% participating share in the Block, with the remaining 60% split evenly between Petronas Suriname and QatarEnergy. This key exploration contract with key players across both Suriname’s energy industry and international energy industries highlights the vital role the country is playing in global economic development and energy potential.  

Rahman, Vice President of Exploration for Petronas, highlights that “Securing these blocks is crucial to Petronas’ effort in unlocking Suriname’s vast resource potential in the basin. This underscores the aspiration to build our presence in the country and strengthen our international portfolio, especially in the Americas.” He continues, “We look forward to working alongside the host authority and our partners to achieve more significant milestones while ensuring secure affordable, and sustainable energy to the market”. Rahman’s comments exemplify exactly how Petronas continues to be a leading energy solution provider across the globe as it works to extend its reach across the globe by adding yet another vast region to its portfolio. By helping to establish Suriname in its own right as a vital oil and gas exploration site, Petronas Suriname adds to the continued investment from companies across the globe into the region.   

However, as Rahman notes, throughout every aspect of Petronas Suriname’s operations there is always a keen focus on sustainability, a value passed down throughout the Petronas network. Sustainability is such a key aspect of Petronas’ operations as they are working with finite resources so must be responsible with every aspect of its operations to bring vital development across the energy sector whilst limiting the damage done to the planet. The global Petronas is on a mission to be entirely net zero by 2050, and so this responsibility extends to the Suriname subsidiary to create value, whilst safeguarding the environment with environmental initiatives, supporting social impact projects, and working closely with governmental agencies to make real change in the oil and gas sectors.  

Ultimately, behind Petronas Suriname is a passion for the planet and its people, which is driven by a desire to create sustainable value across all of its sites of operation and exploration. Petronas Suriname has continued to play a vital role in the country’s energy industry, and thanks to its key contracts and projects with stakeholders, it looks set to continue to develop the energy industry in Suriname for many years to come. We look forward to seeing the outcome of the further evaluation of Block 52, and the role the company will play in bringing oil products to market whilst maintaining sustainability as its core focus.