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Under-Explored Basins in the Mediterranean Region

Tuesday, 13 September 2022, 1:30 p.m.–3:00 p.m.  |  Tunis, Tunisia

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As of today, several large basins in the Mediterranean region have seen very little or no significant exploration activity which will be the focus of this panel session. For example, basins offshore Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt, as well as the Levant Basin, the Adriatic and Ionian Seas are considered unexplored with significant potential. Other previously well-explored basins may still hold some new, game changing targets and therefore may still be considered in that specific understanding as ‘underexplored’.

Oil and gas have been explored and produced for years in the onshore margins of the Mediterranean Sea. Since the 1960s the offshore E&P activity has been successfully and progressively increasing in several basins, such as Nile and Ebro Deltas, the Adriatic and Ionian Seas, offshore Libya and Tunisia and more recently offshore Egypt, Cyprus, Israel and Lebanon, where several giant gas discoveries have been made with reserves in excess of 5 TCF each. Other offshore areas have also been promoted recently for E&P such as the Albanides, Hellenides and Algeria.

The Mediterranean region has been proved with significant hydrocarbon potential for a wide variety of petroleum systems, with source rocks and reservoirs ranging from Mesozoic to Cenozoic age. Well-known broadly ranging petroleum systems have been defined across the region: from biogenic Plio-Pleistocene gas in siliciclastic reservoirs in offshore Nile to oil pooled in Mesozoic fractured and karstified carbonates in offshore Spain. But great areas of the Mediterranean holding potential for new petroleum systems, particularly in deep waters, remain poorly explored.

The Messinian salinity crisis that resulted in a noticeable unconformity with a massive salt deposition has been the subject of controversy, which frequently hampers the evaluation of the hydrocarbon potential below this stratigraphic horizon. However, technology advances such as subsalt seismic processing and imaging, numerical and analog modeling methods, direct hydrocarbon indicators (DHI) or drilling, and production in deep waters have led to the attraction of exploration interests over the last decade in previously poorly imaged and inaccessible geological settings. This has enabled an increased understanding of the regional tectonic and stratigraphic frameworks and better assessment of the remaining potential in the Mediterranean region.

Included with registration
Room Assignment:
Laico Tunis Spa and Conference Center


Under-Explored Basins in the Mediterranean Region
Laico Tunis Spa and Conference Center
Mohamed V Avenue, Human Rights Square
Tunis, Tunis 1001