AFEX and Glencore Exploration Cameroon Ltd (Glencore) (together the Consortium) jointly signed a Production Sharing Agreement for the highly prospective Matanda Block in the Republic of Cameroon in April 2008, after jointly applying for the block in an international bid round held in 2007. The Matanda Block has an area of 1,235 km² and is located partly onshore and partly offshore in the Douala Basin, close to the commercial capital city of Douala. The block is operated by Glencore who hold 75%, the remaining 25% being held by AFEX.

Cameroon Jungle

AFEX's head of Exploration at an oil seep location near the Matanda Block

The Matanda Block is situated in the prolific Gulf of Guinea petroleum province, one of Africa’s richest hydrocarbon zones. Numerous historical oil and gas discoveries have been made in the onshore area close to the block and the block itself contains two gas-condensate discoveries made by Gulf Oil in the early 1980’s. More recently, significant oil and gas discoveries have been made adjacent to the block by Bowleven PLC on the offshore Etinde Block and by Victoria Oil & Gas PLC on the onshore Logbaba Block which is now being developed.

The presence of a highly active petroleum system is further demonstrated by numerous surface seepages of oil in and around the block.

The prolific nature of the Douala Basin has also been proved in the past few years by the enormous success of offshore drilling in Equatorial Guinea and adjacent parts of Cameroon, with major oil and gas field development projects now going ahead.

The Consortium’s plans for the Matanda Block include the modern appraisal of the North Matanda gas-condensate discovery and the investigation of the very attractive additional exploration potential of the block.

2014 testing on the Matanda Block

To this end, the Consortium has conducted detailed geological studies and has acquired 150 km of onshore 2D seismic and approximately 200 km² of 3D seismic over the offshore part of the block.

The Consortium began a drilling campaign to test seismically-defined targets in the Tertiary and Cretaceous in 2013. The well results to date have extended the previously proven area, discovered new reservoirs and have increased the estimates of gas and condensated resources.

The Atwood Aurora jack-up rig contracted by the Consortium to drill on the Matanda Block

Glencore, the operator, has publically reported that the North Matanda field has a hydrocarbon resource potential of 600-2000 BCF gas contingent resources with 25-125 mmbbl condensate.