Moving higher: Pakistan Petroleum Limited makes another gas discovery

Another feather in the stock of Sindh’s Gambat South

Saad Hasan August 04, 2014


Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) on Monday announced discovery of 42 million standard cubic feet per day (mmscfd) of gas in the Gambat South block, its third and biggest discovery so far in the particular area.

The company said the exploration well Sharf X-1 was spud on April 18, 2014, and the final depth of 3,730 meters was reached on July 6, 2014. Along with the gas, condensate with flow of 199 barrels per day has also been discovered, reinforcing the commercial viability of the well, the company said.

More significantly, PPL said the expected production from the well could go up to 60 mmscfd. “Two additional zones have been identified that will be tested later, resulting in an expected cumulative production of 60 mmscfd, which translates into approximately 7,400 barrels per day in oil equivalent and foreign exchange saving of $0.75 million per day.”

PPL announced two discoveries in the Gambat South block, which is located in Sanghar District of Sindh, last year within a span of two months. Previous wells Wafiq X-1 and Shahdad X-1 had initially yielded 7.4 mmscfd and 27.8 mmscfd of gas, respectively.

“The well is being flowed at different choke sizes to measure the gas flow rates, and the actual flow potential of the well will be determined after completion of the test,” the company said about its latest find.

Government Holdings Private Limited (GHPL) and Asia Resources Oil Limited (AROL) with 25% and 10% working interest are joint venture partners of PPL in the block.

PPL, which has a portfolio of 47 exploration blocks, has been aggressively searching for new hydrocarbon finds since last year to compensate for decrease in production from its established fields like Sui.

Much of the credit for PPL’s decision to intensify search for new reserves goes to former Managing Director Asim Murtaza Khan and his team. Khan retired recently.

State-run PPL had earmarked Rs10 billion to be spent on exploration activities during last fiscal year with most of the focus on Gambat South.

PPL accounts for 22% of the country’s gas production. In the nine months of July-March 2013-14, PPL posted a profit of Rs38 billion, up 13.4% over the same period in the previous year.

The company has been trying to slow down the depletion rate of its fields by installing compressor plants and drilling more wells.

PPL’s six producing fields include Sui, Kandhkot, Adhi, Mazrani, Chachar and Hala, while it has working interest in eight partner-operated fields.

PPL also has working interest in offshore fields in Iraq and Yemen. But doubts have been raised about its concession in Iraq since militants took over swaths of the country.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 5th, 2014.

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