Swift Energy Co. has entered into a long-term agreement for natural gas gathering and processing services in the Eagle Ford Shale with Eagle Ford Gathering LLC, a 50-50 joint venture of Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP and Copano Energy LLC.

Houston-based Swift said the agreement, which became effective June 1, is for its natural gas production from La Salle County, TX. The company said it will have up to 40 MMcf/d of firm capacity available to the system by 4Q2012.

Paul Vincent, finance director for Swift, told NGI’s Shale Daily on Thursday the company started drilling in La Salle County in January and hopes to have 15 to 20 wells drilled in the county by year-end. He added that natural gas prices would not affect the company’s plans.

Swift also announced that one of its partners recently completed and tested a well targeting the Austin Chalk in Louisiana. Initial test production of the GASRS 23-1 well measured 744 b/d of oil and 7.2 MMcf/d of natural gas, with flowing tubing pressure of 4,100 psi on a 34/64′ choke. The well, the first of four to six wells that are planned to be drilled in 2012, is located in the South Burr Ferry field in Vernon Parish, LA.

Swift operates in four geographic areas: South Texas (Bee, Dimmit, Goliad, La Salle, Live Oak, McMullen and Webb counties), Central Louisiana and East Texas (Jasper and Newton counties, TX, and Allen, Beauregard, Rapides and Vernon parishes, LA), South Louisiana (Assumption, Cameron, Iberia, Jefferson Davis, St. Martin, St. Mary, Terrebonne and Vermillion parishes), and Southeast Louisiana (Jefferson, Lafourche, Plaquemines and St. Charles parishes).