• Felix Tsourakis

CGG discusses Timor-Leste seismic acquisition program

As part of the preparation of the Timor-Leste Oil & Gas Online Summit I had the pleasure to interview Jarrad Grahame, Senior Geoscientist for the Asia-Pacific region, CGG Multi-Client, and discuss CGG's large-scale seismic acquisition program in Timor-Leste.


Thank you for joining us today Jarrad. You have been a very active part of Timor-Leste's geoseismic campaign. Before we start, would like to share some of your experience with us?

Jarrad Grahame, Senior Geoscientist for the Asia-Pacific region, CGG Multi-Client discusses CGG's activities in Timor-Leste

I am a senior geoscientist working for CGG Multi-Client in the APAC region. Part of my role as a geoscientist within our Multi-Client group is to take part in regional multidisciplinary studies where we leverage the significant geoscience resources and expertise available within CGG to develop an enhanced understanding of the prospectivity of the areas we work in. My background is primarily in seismic interpretation, which is an important element of the collaborative work we undertake for our studies.

When we discuss about global geoscience companies with clients all over the world, the name “CGG” comes up quite a lot, from Africa and the Middle East to Brazil. What does CGG do? We provide a comprehensive range of data, services and equipment that supports the discovery and sustainable management of the Earth’s natural resources in all environments. We deliver our unique geoscience expertise through our three core businesses: Geoscience, Multi-Client and Equipment.

CGG’s Multi-Client business line offers a comprehensive portfolio of multi-disciplinary, multi-client products, including the industry’s most recent and technologically advanced seismic data library in the world’s key locations. Our JumpStart™ integrated geoscience packages accelerate exploration in key basins by bringing together the full suite of CGG's geoscience capabilities and rich data sets to enhance understanding of the plays and opportunities that they contain.

CGG is very active in Timor-Leste, what are your activities in the country?


Over the past few years, CGG has undertaken a large-scale seismic acquisition program consisting of five phases of broadband 2D seismic. The surveys cover the entire Banda Arc from Offshore Timor / Timor-Leste around to Seram in the north. In addition to the data acquisition, we have undertaken a complementary large-scale interpretation of the data and developed a regional prospectivity JumpStart study to address key gaps in the geological knowledge of the Banda Arc, from its tectonic development, through to detailed petroleum systems analyses. In addition to the data acquisition and geological studies, we are contributing to the promotion of the Timor-Leste offshore area by offering up key insights derived from our studies in the form of publications and participation in events such as this one.

I see that you have invested significantly in Timor-Leste. What unique qualities and opportunities led you to this decision?


One of the biggest drivers for us in developing new projects initially is the recognition of knowledge gaps or a general lack of understanding of the geology, and more importantly, of the prospectivity of the areas we work in. This is more often than not associated with a lack of high-quality data coverage. The offshore areas of the Banda Arc, including Timor Leste, were previously poorly understood due to a lack of high-quality seismic data coverage and detailed analyses of the prospective elements of the region. One of the most important outcomes of these projects and studies is the key prospectivity insights that we can derive which have a significant amount of supporting evidence. We believe this understanding will aid and underpin future exploration.

If somebody was interested in investing in Timor-Leste's oil & gas industry, what would you advise them to pay attention to?


The most important insights we’ve gained through our work in the area is that imaging is everything if you want to understand petroleum systems, in particular, beneath the fold and thrust belts. There are a number of supporting factors, such as onshore and offshore oil seeps, which attest to the presence of oil generation, but it is only through high-quality seismic imaging that we have been able to develop a detailed understanding of the development and distribution of these systems. A potential investor’s ability to access high-quality data would therefore be one of the most important considerations.

Timor-Leste is currently holding the 2nd Offshore and Onshore Licensing Round in Dili. Many IOCs from all over the world are looking into the 18 available blocks. What type of companies are you looking forward to working with?


We look forward to working with all IOC’s as well as junior companies with existing interests in the offshore Timor-Leste area, and also those looking to further develop their portfolios, and companies new to the region. The data and prospectivity studies that we have available will provide a valuable kick-start to anyone looking to explore in the area. The bid round offers an exciting opportunity to take advantage of what is available.


Where can somebody hear you give an in-depth analysis of CGG’s activities in Timor-Leste?

CGG plans to continue participating in the ongoing Timor-Leste bid round roadshow events, providing presentations for both the conference and online events. We are happy to share some of the key insights derived from our studies and can provide a comprehensive overview of our datasets and studies to any interested companies wishing to see what we have to offer.

Who are you looking forward to meeting and hearing from at the Timor-Leste Oil & Gas:TEOS?


We look forward to meeting any companies with existing interests as well as companies interested in making a new investment in the area.


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