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E & P News

2017

May 2017: Oil India Limited (OIL) has made 2 hydrocarbon discoveries in the Moran Petroleum Mining Lease (PML) in the Upper Assam Basin. Wells Borbhuibil-1 and Lakwagaon-1 tested oil in sands of the Barail and Lakadong formations.

Apr 2017: ONGC is to start-up the Daman project soon in the Gulf of Cambai. Gas from the phase I will contribute around 0.9 bcm of gas a year from May 2017. Phase 2 will be completed by May 2018 and add another 1 bcm and it will eventually be ramped up to 2.9 Bcm a year by 2020.

Feb 2017: India has approved the award of operating licences for 31 contract areas (23 onshore and 8 offshore) after receiving bids for 34 of 46 oil and gas fields that were auctioned in May 2016.

Feb 2016: ONGC will develop the offshore North West B-173A oil and gas field as part of its Western Offshore facilities. The field, discovered in 2014, is 5 kms northwest of the B-173A field and 25 kms north of the Neelam field in 55m of water. Development involves a WH platform, pipelines and 3 wells. It will come onstream in 2019.

2016

Nov 2016: Niko Resources has put its 10% interest in the D6 deep water block up for sale. Sales volumes are declining due to depletion, partially offset by incremental production from sidetracks and reactivations. Drilling of the first of 2 sidetracks in the MA field began in June.

Oct 2016: Cairn announced that the Mangala oil field has achieved 300 mm bbls of cumulative production. Mangala is produced with the Bhagyam, Aishwariya and Raageshwari fields in the Rajasthan block. Cairn launched polymer injection at Mangala in 2014.

May 2016: Reliance is preparing to restart work in 4 offshore oil and gas blocks, including the deepwater KG-D6 block in the Krishna Godavari basin, focusing on the R-Cluster, Satellite and MJ discoveries. Production of gas from the D6 block has fallen 85% to 3.2 bcm each year. Reliance is a partner with BP and Niko.

May 2016: The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas is set to launch a bidding round for 67 discovered small fields in 46 Contract areas spread over 9 sedimentary basins in onshore, shallow water and deep water areas. These fields were discovered by the NOCs and are being offered under a revenue sharing contract model.

Apr 2016: Oilex (operator, 40%) and Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation (GSPC, 60%) announced the commencement of gas production from the Bhandut field in onshore Gujarat. Gas produced from Bhandut-3 is processed at the on-site facilities and then delivered to a gas processing plant where it is further treated to required pipeline specifications.  

Mar 2016: ONGC approved the US$5.08 bn Field Development Plan (FDP) for the development of Cluster 2A (oil and gas) and Cluster 2B (gas) fields in deep water block KG-DWN-98/2 in the Krishna-Godavari Basin. The field will be developed with 35 wells, a gas processing platform and an FPSO. First gas is planned for 2019 and first oil for 2020.  

2015

Jul 2015: BG (operator, 30%), with ONGC and Reliance, began oil production from Mukta-B (MB), a 4-legged WH unmanned platform in the offshore Bombay basin. The MB and MA pipelines have also been completed enabling restart of production from the MA platform after 2.5 years.

Apr 2015: Oilex announced the completion of the Cambay-73 oil and gas production facilities Construction of the gas pipeline has commenced with final commissioning expected in June 2015. Cambay-73 will produce 50 to 60 bbls of oil equivalent of gas and condensate.

Apr 2015: The country intends to auction 69 marginal oil and gas fields owned by ONGC. Meanwhile ONGC and Oil India will invest US$6bn in exploration and production in financial year 2015/2016 to try to arrest declining oil and gas production.

2014

Sep 2014: Cairn India, part of Vedanta, has made 3 new discoveries in west Rajasthan taking its total oil discoveries in the block to 36. One well is close to the Mangala field. The company is spending US$3bn over 3 years to boost oil and gas output from Rajasthan.

Sep 2014: ONGC announced that it will invest US$863 mm on the Daman gas and condensate development in the Tapti Daman Block in the Arabian Sea. The project covers the C-24 and B-12-11, B-12-13 and B-12-15 fields. Production is planned to commence in 2016 and facilities will include 7 well head platforms and 1 riser platform with pipelines and 28 wells.

Jul 2014: ONGC approved the proposal for redevelopment of the Mumbai High (North) field with a capital investment of US$950 mm. Facilities include installation of 5 platforms and drilling of 52 wells and 24 sidetracks.  Overall project completion is scheduled for May 2017.

Feb 2014: GSPC has declared the commerciality of 6 discoveries (KG-16, 22, 31, 21, 19 and 20SS) within the Deen Dayal field in Block KG-OSN-2001/3 of the Krishna-Godavari Basin. Gross recoverable gas is estimated at up to 133 bcm with initially 25 development wells required to recover proven gas of 29 bcm. The areas excludes the DeenDayal West and extension areas.

Jan 2014: The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has announced 46 blocks in the 10th round of the New Exploration Licensing Policy. Under NELP X, 17 onshore, 15 shallow water and 14 deep water water blocks, covering an area of 166,053 sq kms in 13 sedimentary basins, will be offered for competitive bidding.

Jan 2014: India plans to offer at least 56 exploration blocks in its first auction of licenses in 2 years. India is hoping that a recent gas pricing reform will increase interest from foreign companies. Previous exploration rounds were dominated by local firms, mainly ONGC. The ministry plans to invite bids for the blocks in February.

Jan 2014: ONGC will invest US$9 bn to develop oil and gas discoveries in the Krishna Godavari basin. ONGC has made 11 discoveries in Block KG-DWN-98/2, next to Reliance’s KG-D6 Block and Gujarat State Petroleum's Deendayal gas field. The block is divided into a Northern Discovery Area (NDA) and Southern Discovery Area (SDA). Cairn still holds 10% in the block.

2013

Oct 2013: It has been pointed out that only two blocks out of 254 blocks awarded under the New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP) since 1991 have begun production. This not only reflects the bureaucratic drawbacks of operating in India, but also points to a lack of geological potential and commercial prospects over a large part of the sub-continent.

Oct 2013: ONGC has discovered oil in block KG-DWN-98/2 in the Krishna-Godavari basin off the Andhra Pradesh coast, earlier believed to hold predominantly gas. Oil has been struck in 3 out of 6 appraisal wells drilled and is in addition to the large gas reserves the block is believed to hold. Gas production is planned to commence by 2018.

Sep 2013: The government is allowing state companies to explore for shale oil and gas on acreage already awarded. The policy covers acreage held by Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Oil India. Of about 356 blocks, India's regulator has said 176 could hold shale resources. The wording of contracts for blocks awarded later (e.g. to Reliance, BG and Cairn) has been interpreted to exclude unconventional energy. The ministry is proposing an inclusive licence for future acreage.

Sep 2013: ONGC, with 30%, has approved a US$560 mm project to enhance oil recovery at the Rajasthan oilfields. Cairn India, the operator with 70%, submitted an EOR plan in 2012 for the Mangala oilfield, the largest of the 26 finds it has made in the Barmer district. The joint venture will drill 48 infill wells up to Mar 2014.

Apr 2013: Cairn has made its 26th discovery in the RJ-ON-90/1 block of the Barmer Basin in Rajasthan. Raageshwari-South-1 drilled a 10m oil column within the Dharvi Dungar Formation.

Apr 2013: India may offer 68 blocks in the 10th round of New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP), 25 in deep waters, 20 in shallow waters and 23 onshore. This will be the second highest offering since NELP began in 1999. The government has awarded 254 blocks in previous rounds. NELP VIII was the largest with 70 blocks offered but only 32 awarded. In NELP VII, 41 blocks out of the 57 were awarded while NELP VI achieved 52 out of 55 blocks.

Mar 2013: Cairn and  ONGC have commenced production from Aishwariya, the third largest field in the Rajasthan Block (RJ-ON-90/1). The Mangala, Bhagyam and Aishwariya (MBA) fields in the Barmer basin currently contribute over 23% of India’s oil production.

Feb 2013: Cairn has approval to drill exploration wells on the  Rajasthan block that will help it boost output to 215,000 bbls per day by March 2014. These will be the first exploration wells on the block in over 5 years. The Mangala oilfield went onstream in 2009 and 170,000 bbls per day are now produced from the block. Cairn plans to drill 30 exploration wells over a period of just over a year.

Jan 2013: Reliance has shut its eighth well on the Dhirubhai-1 and 3 (D1&D3) gas fields in the Krishna Godavari basin, KG-D6 block. Output has fallen to an all time low. Reliance has drilled 22 wells on the fields but has put only 18 on production. The fields started gas production in 2009 and reached a peak of 20 bcm per year in Aug 2010 before water and sand ingress. The same problem has led to shutting of one-third of the wells on the MA oil field in the same block, onstream in Sept 2008. Output from MA is half its peak rate. Reliance has made 1 oil (MA) and 18 gas discoveries in the block.

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