The well, which Vaalco dubbed an “exploration appraisal”, was drilled to evaluate an untested fault block on the south-west flank of the Ebouri field.
The probe “encountered water in the Gamba reservoir and in the Dentale formation, and will be abandoned”, Vaalco said in a statement on Monday.
The company added that it will soon begin operations to install new electric submersible pumps on its currently producing well in the Ebouri field.
After that task is complete, the KCA Deutag jack-up Ben Rinnes, which drilled the failed appraisal, will be moved to a new location north of the Etame field to drill an exploration well on the Ovoka prospect, formerly known as Mu.
The well will be drilled in 60 metres of water to a depth of 2700 metres to evaluate the Gamba reservoir and the underlying Lucina formation.
The prospect could have potential recoverable reserves of more than 30 million barrels of oil, Vaalco said.
Vaalco and its partners are looking for available rigs to drill additional exploration wells offshore Gabon once the current multi-well drilling programme is completed, it added.
*Luke Johnson, Upstreamonline.