Muscat: Oman’s oil production including condensates rose by four per cent last year, to an average of 918,000 barrels per day (bpd) thanks largely to gains from enhanced oil recovery projects, according to Nasser Al Jashmi, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Oil and Gas, on Sunday.
The senior Oil and Gas Ministry pointed out that the sector’s contribution to country’s GDP had increased from 30 per cent in 2011 to 55 per cent in 2012.
“The increase was due to new discoveries in three different oil fields,” al Jashmi added.
“We drilled 41 exploratory wells and more than 1000 wells were explored,” he announced, adding that bids were invited from companies, including international, for 12 concessions areas.
He also said that during 2012, 18 companies had done exploration and production work on 29 confession areas.
Meanwhile, Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) also announced a significant gas find in the northern part of its concession area.
Mabrouk Deep, some 40 km west of Saih Rawl, Oman’s main gas field, has estimated in-place volumes amounting to 2.9 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of gas and 115 million barrels of condensate. Exploratory drilling took place last year at depths of up to 5,000 metres and a large field of some 60 sq. km was located.
In addition, the oil company announced, there were five new oil discoveries in 2012, amounting to approximately 300 million barrels of stock tank oil initially in place (STOIIP) from Shuaiba and Gharif reservoirs.
“The scale of the find at Mabrouk is tremendous news for Oman as it will enable a further significant boost to economic growth and social development,” reckons PDO Managing Director, Raoul Restucci.
“The discovery underlines the truly excellent work that our Exploration Directorate is conducting to identify and appraise new hydrocarbon reservoirs which will sustain the Sultanate for many years to come,” he added.
The announcement came as PDO declared that it had enjoyed a record year by registering its highest ever hydrocarbon (oil, gas and condensate) production in its history: 1.24 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day. This exceeded the previous best of 1.21 million boepd in 2001.
Daily oil production stood at 566,305 barrels per day (bpd) and above PDO’s long-term plateau target of over 550,000 bpd. Daily production of non-associated and associated gas stood at 582,500 boepd with condensates at 92,500 bpd. The combined yield meant it was the fifth successive year that the Company had increased its aggregate production figure.
“PDO accounts for around 70 per cent of the country’s crude oil production and nearly all of its natural gas supply so there is a huge onus on us to find and develop new fields of a challenging or “unconventional” nature to replace those that are declining,” Restucci said.