March 2, 2024, 3:31 pm

Shamim Jahangir

2023-02-04 06:36:20 BdST

Massive oil, gas exploration in onshore blocks starts soon

Massive onshore oil and gas exploration will begin soon at Block 22A and 22B of Chattogram Hill Tracts areas in the country under a joint venture to meet a growing demand for the natural gas at a low cost.

“We invited the Expression of Interest (EOI) last year and five international companies have already shown their interest in exploring for oil and gas in onshore blocks,” Bapex Managing Director Md Ali said.

The international companies are Australian Ingauge Energy Pty Ltd, Chinese MIE Holdings Corporation and joint venture Dubai, Iraq and China PetroChina FZE, China Oil Gas Exploration and Development Limited, joint venture of India and Singapore Invenire Energy Private Limited/Petroglobal and Indian Advent Oil Field Services.

Of the five companies, four have been shortlisted so far, he said.

He said Bapex divided the three hill districts into 10 structures, including Changutong, Shishak, Goba Mura, Barkal, Bandarban, Bhuachari, Subtang, Belachari, Gilachari and Matamohari under joint venture with BAPEX.

Despite continued exploration efforts, onshore south eastern part and most of the Chattagram (former Chittagong) Hill Tract areas remain under-explored, he said.

“We’re expected to choose international oil companies for drilling the prospective Chattogram Hill Tracts areas as per the decision of the ministry,” he added.

He also said a committee of Petrobangla has also drafted a revised model production-sharing contract (MPSC) for the exploration from onshore blocks.

The ceiling tariff of the natural gas is between $2.7 and $6 in onshore blocks, another official said.

He further said the MPSC is as like as MPSC with Chevron where investor may get 65 percent of output gas and rest by Bapex as joint venture.

“We will just offer them land and they will shoulder rest of investment risk.”

The Bapex has sent a joint venture framework proposal to the ministry to explore CHT gas prospect which may likely to endorse next week.

Talking over the Bhola gas prospect and its supply to Dhaka, the Bapex managing director said the government has initially taken a decision to supply the gas on CNG format.

“After getting Bhola north well, we have expected to 2 trillion cubic feet of gas reserve in Bhola Island,” he said.

The Bapex has already acquire land for conduct3000 line kilometres seismic survey in Block 15 full and Block 22 partially.

Of them, 2000 line kilometres seismic survey will be conducted with the Chinese joint venture Sinopec and rest of 1000 line kilometres by Bapex itself.

Besides, Bapex will conduct seismic survey at Bhola, Monpura, Zakiganj and other land areas to get gas output.

The historical exploration success of 3:1 has attracted notable IOCs to take part in exploration activities under Production Sharing Contracts (PSC), officials said.

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