Premier produces oil at Solan, west of Shetland

Premier Oil said on Wednesday that first oil from the Solan field west of Shetland was produced on April 12 — but also announced yet another delay to the project.

Premier’s share price was up about 4% in morning trading.

Premier said the first producer well (P1) is being naturally flowed at a deliberately restricted initial rate.

“It is planned that the well will remain free flowing for a short time after which the ESP (pump) will be turned on,” said Premier in a statement.

“Following this initial period and, taking advantage of the availability of the Superior Flotel, over which Premier has contractual options until the end of May, Premier intends to carry out a planned production shut down to complete the final commissioning of the water injection plant, the tie in of the second water injection well (W2) and preparation for the tie in of the second producer well (P2).

“The Ocean Valiant rig is currently drilling the second producer well (P2y), where 1,500ft of high quality reservoir sands have been intersected and which is expected to be completed and tied-in by mid-year.

“Production from the field is expected to build up to an anticipated production rate of 20-25 kbeopd in the second half of 2016 when both pairs of producer-injector wells will be on stream.”