ONGC to invest USD 2 billion in drilling 103 wells on main gas-bearing asset in Arabia Sea
India’s top oil and gas producer, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), plans to invest over USD 2 billion in drilling 103 wells on its main gas-bearing asset in the Arabia Sea. The move is part of ONGC’s turnaround plan to add 100 million tonnes to production.
The investment will enhance production by over 100 million tones of oil and oil equivalent gas over the life of the field. The company will tap smaller and previously untapped reservoirs to raise output. ONGC produces two-thirds of all oil and gas produced in India, and any incremental production would help the country cut its dependence on imports for meeting energy needs. The wells will be drilled on the Bassein and Satellite assets over the next 2-3 years.
ONGC has three main assets off the west coast – Mumbai High, Heera and Neelam, and Bassein and Satellite, which contributed the bulk of 21.7 million tonnes of oil and 21.68 billion cubic metres of gas produced in 2021-22. The Bassein and Satellite asset has several fields including the prime Bassein gas field, D1, and Tapti-Daman. These currently produce 55,000-56,000 barrels per day of oil and 28 million standard cubic metres per day of gas. The wells will bring additional production that will offset the natural decline in older wells and add to the overall output.
India imports over 85% of the crude oil and roughly half of the natural gas that is used to produce electricity, make fertiliser, converted into CNG for running automobiles and piped to household kitchens for cooking. The government has been pressing state-owned firms to step up efforts to raise domestic output to help cut the USD 115 billion import bill.
ONGC reported a gradual decline in output for over a decade primarily because its fields are old and ageing. However, the company has now worked on a comprehensive asset base plan rather than a piecemeal field-centric approach.
The fourth phase of the redevelopment of Mumbai High, India’s most prolific oil and gas field, is almost complete, and the next phase is at the implementation stage while the sixth is at the conceptualization stage. ONGC is likely to see a reversal of production decline from the current fiscal.
The Oil and Natural Gas Corporation is an Indian central public sector undertaking under the ownership of Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India. It is headquartered in Dehradun. ONGC was founded on 14 August 1956 by the Government of India.
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