OMV began operating in New Zealand after acquiring a 30% share in the Maari oil field following the purchase of Cultus Petroleum of Australia in 1999. It has since expanded into a range of other assets through subsequent acquisitions. OMV is New Zealand´s largest liquid hydrocarbon producer, as well as the third largest gas producer in the country, with natural gas from two major gas fields Pohokura and Maui and oil production from Maari field. With its relatively underexplored basins, New Zealand offers huge potential for future discoveries and developments and the company is the operator in a pioneering joint venture with the aim of exploring the Great South Basin off the south coast of the South Island.
OMV New Zealand holds interests in three offshore production permits (Maari, Pohokura and Maui) and seven exploration licences (three as operator).
The Maari oil field is New Zealand’s largest and lies 80 km off the south Taranaki coast. OMV New Zealand is the operator with a 69% share. In October 2012, OMV New Zealand announced the production of 20 mn boe from the Maari field since start of production in 2009. Several projects for growing production in Maari are being matured and result in plans for an extensive drilling campaign starting in 2013. A major step in operating the Maari field has been the purchase of the FPSO vessel Raroa in 2012 which will now be operated by OMV. Exploration opportunities around the Maari field in the Taranaki Basin have been matured and exploration drilling will begin in 2013.
OMV New Zeland has a 26% share in the Pohokura gas field in the Taranaki Basin. Phohokura began production in late 2006 and meets about 40% of New Zealand’s gas demand.
Maui was the country’s largest gas field until 2008. It meets about a third of New Zealand’s gas needs. OMV NZ has a 10% share in Maui.
In the Great South Basin, OMV completed a 4,820 km2 3D seismic survey, the largest 3D survey conducted in New Zealand waters to date. Exploration prospects continue to be matured.
Being socially responsible is a key part of OMV’s approach to sustainability. OMV New Zealand actively supports the communities where it operates, working f.e. closely with Iwi (Maori tribes) and local youth groups in the Taranaki regions or funding a project to study the whale migration patterns.