To meet increasing gas demands while drawing from the shrinking reserves of a mature field, CTEP (Chevron Thailand E&P) is drilling as many wells as economically feasible. Wells have to be drilled and completed very quickly to minimize rig time and reduce the "per well" drilling cost. In 2005, the average time to drill and complete a slimhole well was 6 days; the target for 2006 is 4.5 days.

During 2005, CTEP drilled and completed over 300 wells while 450 wells are planned for 2006. In addition to exceptional drilling performance in the Gulf of Thailand, value creation is enhanced by performing a high number of IFDP (in-fill drilling projects) whenever possible. This reduces cost by minimizing new platform construction, reusing slots, and reducing installation of new surface casing. The IFDP project can be categorized into two phases: (1) slot recovery; and (2) drilling. This paper focuses on phase 1 of the project, where CTEP uses HWO (hydraulic workover) systems along with cementing, slickline, and wireline services to perform the slot-recovery operations before rig arrival. Topics of discussion include current operational equipment, methods and procedures, logistical challenges, lessons learned, and new development plans intended to further enhance the operation.

Statistically, it is estimated that for each single platform 6-well abandonment campaign, CTEP gain 7 to 8 days of drilling time by not utilizing rig time for the Phase I operation. The drilling rig focus is, therefore, maintained on, doing what it does best, drilling new wells safely and economically. Additional wells are drilled with the time saved supplying early gas to meet Thailand's expanding industrial demands.

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