Port Moresby-based explorer Oil Search has plugged and abandoned its South Gharib-X1 well after failing to find either of its objectives.
Oil Search said it had also struggled with poor hole conditions during drilling.
It said the well had failed to strike either the Nukhul formation or the Nubian Sandstone in pre-Miocene sediments.
As a result, it said the prospectivity of the South Gharib play was untested. It said it would evaluate drilling data from the well before deciding on further exploration in the area.
Oil Seach also said it had completed remedial engineering work at its Cobra-1 well site in Papua New Guinea, which spudded last week but was then suspended due to subsistence at the well site.
The company said it had been forced to move the rig slightly for the remedial work and was now busy moving it back into place. Drilling is expected to restart in about a week.
Oil Search operates the well, on the PPL 190 licence, with a 63.556% stake.
The well is being drilled to a depth of 3100 feet targeting the Iagifu Sandstone. The company said it was the first well drilled in PNG to target a seismically-defined sub-thrust fault play.