Canada-based oil and gas company Petromanas Energy has initiated drilling of the Juban-1 well on Block A onshore Albania and completed surface casing.
Petromanas plans to drill the well to a target depth of about 2,600m at an expected time period of 30 days, spending approximately $9m.
For the drilling, the company has locally sourced a double land rig from Simmons Edeco, with 1,000 horsepower capacity.
Petromanas CEO Glenn McNamara said that spudding of Juban-1 well is a crucial step in the company's 2012 drilling programme.
"Juban is our shallowest prospect and drilling this prospect will allow us to begin assessing the potential of the carbonates in the northern part of the country, outside the areas of current production."
The company is currently drilling Shpirag-2 well, where it earlier set casting at a depth of about 4,230m.
The drilling of the well, located in the Flysch shale above the target carbonate reservoir zone, is estimated to cost about $39m.
Petromanas expects to encounter carbonate at about 5,000m and is planning to penetrate about 1,100m of carbonate to reach a depth of 6,100m, which is expected to be reached in late 2012 or early 2013.
The company has also begun 2012 2D seismic test programme over Blocks 2-3 using Geotec Spa of Italy.
The company is awaiting approval from the Albanian Government to extend a one-year contract to complete its work for Period 2, under the Production Sharing Contract for Blocks D-E.
Petromanas will have to complete its obligations on Blocks D-E under the PSC by 25 December 2013, if the extension is approved.
The company will use the data collected from its drilling programmes at Shpirag and Juban to determine its commitments for Period 2.
Image: Petromas has expanded its drilling programme in Albania.