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BAKER, MICHEAL C. W., IEDS Ltd., Ilsom, Tetbury, Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

ABSTRACT: New Venture Opportunities in Bolivia

Some parts of Bolivia are at a semi-mature level of exploration. Other large regions are underdrilled; some have not been drilled at all, for example the Altiplano (early discouragement) and Northern Bolivia (remoteness, unresolved stratigraphy and, in the Northern Subandes, structural complexity).

Now that more geological data are becoming available and new contracts, favorable to overseas investors, have been formulated, an exploration renewal is underway, backed by the major and many leading independent companies.

Half the former and current producing fields are located in the Southern Subandes: an area where until very recently no seismic exploration had been carried out. Modern seismic techniques allied to fold-thrust models applied successfully elsewhere by overseas companies are expected to yield a stream of new fields and deep pool discoveries in this region. Conditions are also favorable for production enhancement using horizontal drilling.

In the adjacent Foothills, Boomerang and Chaco fields, the relationships between trap development and migration are being understood. Improved knowledge of potential reservoir distribution (particularly Silurian reefs and Cretaceous non-marine sands) will improve drilling success in these areas.

Of the higher risk areas, the Altiplano is relatively accessible and straddles potential export routes but has escaped serious exploration until now, despite the presence of seeps and large structures. Northern Bolivia is one of the least explored segments of the Subandean chain but numerous seeps and recent discoveries demonstrate hydrocarbon availability.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90988©1993 AAPG/SVG International Congress and Exhibition, Caracas, Venezuela, March 14-17, 1993.