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Oil and gas discoveries.

There were 10 oil and gas discoveries in recent years so far of which five are gas, 4 oil and 1 gas condensate. Most of these discoveries are in the southern districts on Indus basin. These discoveries are now being appraised for confirmation of reserves and finalisation of development and exploration plan. The government has also received an application for deep water exploration from Shell and more response is expected from other companies.

The Petroleum Ministry is now concentrating on unexplored onshore, i.e. land areas, and would initiate further incentives to extend exploration to areas so far unexplored. Some 345,000 sq. km of open land area and 155,000 sq. km of offshore is available and is offered for upstream investment on competitive and attractive terms.

Major oil producing fields of the country have reached the brink of exhaustion as almost all the crude has been recovered from these fields. As these fields gradually dry up the current recovery rate of crude oil of about 57000 barrels a day will come down drastically, according to estimates there were 558 million barrels available from 71 different oil fields scattered mostly in Punjab and Sindh. Of these, more than 345 million barrels had been recovered that accounted for 61 per cent of the total proven reservoirs.

Dhurnal fields in the Punjab, the largest oil reservoir of 51 million barrels, is left with only 3 million barrels, as 47 million barrels oil has been recovered from the fields, Sindh Mazari and Leghari oil fields that had cumutative potential of 45.7 million barrels were now capable of providing only 4.5 million barrels, as the rest of the oil had been consumed. Of 11 million barrels from Kashkheli field, more than 9 million barrels had been taken away, leaving less than 2 million barrels in the well.

From Thora and Toot oil fields that had combined reservoirs of more than 28 million barrels about 23 million barrels of oil had been utilized and they would be available with the balance of 4.5 million barrels of oil. In the left-over large fields; Missakaswal, Fimkassar, Dhodak condensate field, Rajian, Kunar, Tando Alam, Soho, Ratna and Dakhni, a cumulative 111 million barrels were recoverable reservoirs. These fields can give relatively higher rate of daily recovery, yet it would be difficult to maintain the current rate of recovery after depletion of major oil fields. Taking the total daily consumption of the country into consideration, the remaining desposits of oil would hardly meet the requirement for more than 3 years.

It is reported that the current rate of production would become meaningless in the coming year as the demand was increasing at the rate of 8-9 per cent per annum. At present domestic production of oil is providing more than 30 per cent of the total consumption. Oil and Gas Development Corporation (OGDC), Pakistan Oil Fields Ltd. (POL), Union Texas Pakistan (UTP), Oxy and Pakistan Petroleum Ltd. (PPL) are the main operators of these fields.

Significant Discovery of Gas in Sindh

Significant discovery of gas has been reported in South West Miano Petroleum Concession in Sindh. The find was reported by OMV (Pakistan) Exploration GmbH, a wholly owned subsidiary of OMV and operator of the licence. The operator struck gas in Sawan 1, the first exploration well drilled in the South West Miano exploration licence which is situated in the Khairpur district, in Sindh. The field is well placed and its location in sandy desert terrain near industry pipelines is easy to develop. Initial production would be in 1999 and full production is in 2001-2002. The company has drilled three wells - Khararo-1, Duljan-1 and Sawan-1, in the Middle Indus basin since the start of last year. The latest well, Sawan-1, tested gas at a stabilized rate of 58 million cubic feet per day via a 62/64 inch choke. Drilled to a depth of 3,587 metres, the well found a 95 metre gas column. The south west Miano block is operated by Austria's OMV and Hardy has a 30 per cent stake in the consortium, which also includes Pakistan Petroleum Ltd.

Second Major Gas Discovery in Sindh

A second major discovery of high quality gas in Sindh has also been reported. Described as a breakthrough in efforts to reduce Pakistan's dependence on. energy imports, the new discovery of oil as well as gas had been made by Oil and Gas Development Corporation (OGDC) in Tando Allah Yar which contains, according to tentative analysis, around two million stock tank barrels of oil and 38 billion cubic feet of gas. At Tando Allah Yar-I, OGDC spudded the well on November 15 last over the area awarded to it in September 1997 drilled down to the depth of 1750 metres. The objective, according to the official sources, was to test hydrocarbon potential of Lower Goru Formation (Upper sands) of cretaceous age. The drilling was completed last month. During the test, the well flowed from two zones at a combined flow rate of 380 barrels of oil and 16 million cubic feet of gas per day. According to the details, the first zone flowed at 1/2 inch choke size, well pressure 1550 (PPSI) 290 barrels of oil and 7.6 (MCF) gas per day. In the second zone at 1/2 inch choke size, well pressure 1700 (PPSI) oil flowed 90 barrels and gas 8.5 (MCF) per day. The well has been completed as a dual producer to produce from both zones.

Gas Discovery at Dharki

Mari Gas Company discovered natural gas at the flow rate of 15 MMSCF per day at Dharki in District Ghotki in Sindh. The net gas pay zone is 180 feet thick. The gas flow rates are restricted to small choke of only half inch. But there Mari Gas statement said the Mari Deep Well-II seemed to be a prolific producer with high absolute open flow potential. The statement added that to appraise fully the size of the deep gas reservoirs a detailed seismic survey would be needed followed by the drilling of three appraisal wells. According to the preliminary calculations, the total recoverable reserves are expected to be in excess of one TCF.

These recoverable reserves would add to the remaining recoverable reserves of already discovered shallow reservoir in Habib Rahi Limestone formation at the shallow depth of 2200-2400-ft. Condensates has also been recovered during the testing of the two wells. However, the flow rate and quantities of condensate have yet to be determined. The sharer-holders of Mari Gas Company include Fauji Foundation (40 per cent), OGDCL (20 per cent), Government of Pakistan (20 per cent) and public (20 per cent). Mari Gas Company during its 12 years existence in Pakistan inherited 30 producing wells at production capacity of 200 MMCFD of gas in 1985, it now has 67 producing wells and overall production capacity of 402 MMSCF of gas per day.

Gas Discovery in Kirthar

A huge natural gas reserve, the first in the Kirthar range, and most probably the second largest ever to be discovered in Pakistan, is likely to be tapped soon, according to preliminary estimates of the exploration well drilled recently by a joint-venture company Lasmo of UK. However, in the final assessment, the estimates could go up 8 trillion cubic feet which would be just about two trillion less than that of the Sui field reserves discovered in 1952. More significant than the potential reserves of the field is the fact that gas has been discovered in a new range (Kirthar). Sui and Pirkoh were located in one range while Attock, Dakhni, etc., in the other range, "and we have a third range which has shown gas potential".

A recent study has estimated the potential gas reserves of Pakistan so far to be 200 trillion cubic feet. Earlier studies had said that Pakistan contained a large basinal area with discovered/proven gas reserves of 30 trillion cubic feet. In the 1950s 45 exploratory wells were drilled and seven gas fields, including Sui in Balochistan, were discovered. In 1957, a 6.3 trillion cubic feet reservoir was discovered at Mari. In the 1980s, exploration activity in Pakistan increased dramatically and 120 exploratory wells were drilled. This increase was, primarily, a function of improved fiscal terms attracting foreign investors but was also inspired by a number of drilling successes including OGDC's Pirkoh Dhodak by Amoco, PPL and Adhi in the late 70s.
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Title Annotation:Pakistan
Publication:Economic Review
Date:Mar 1, 1998
Previous Article:Refining opportunities in Pakistan.
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