ONGC approves $5-billion deepwater development

Offshore staff

NEW DELHI, India – The ONGC board of directors has approved a $5.1-billion field development plan for the Cluster 2 oil and gas fields in the deepwater block KG-DWN-98/2 in the Krishna-Godawari basin offshore eastern India.

Cluster 2 is divided into two parts: Cluster 2A, which has estimated in-place reserves of 94.26 MM metric tons of crude oil and 21.75 bcm of associated gas, and Cluster 2B, with estimated in-place reserves of 51.98 bcm of free gas.

The company said it plans to develop the Cluster 2A oil fields with 15 producer and 12 water injection wells, and foresees peak production at a rate of 77,305 b/d of oil and 3.81 MMcm/d of associated gas. It sees peak water injection at a rate of 9,400 cu m/d.

Oil from Cluster 2A will be produced through an FPSO.

Peak production rate of free gas is envisaged at 12.75 MMcm/d from eight wells of Cluster 2B.

Total oil and gas production envisaged is 23.526 MM metric tons and 50.706 bcm, respectively, during the project life. The peak daily production rate from the Cluster 2 works out to 16.89% and 27.60% of ONGC’s current production rate of crude oil and natural gas respectively.

Project facilities include one gas processing platform with a bridge-connected living quarters platform for processing gas from free gas wells; 430 km (267 mi) of subsea pipelines of various sizes from 6-in. to 22-in.; about 151 km (94 mi) of umbilical and 10 manifolds and riser-based manifolds; and an onshore gas-handling terminal.

First gas is planned by June 2019, with first oil by March 2020, and overall completion in June 2020.

Originally awarded to Cairn Energy India Ltd. in 2001, ONGC purchased 90% of block KG-DWN-98/2 in September 2004. Cairn later relinquished the remaining 10% to ONGC.

In analysis released on the transaction Evercore ISI’s Oilfield Services, Equipment & Drilling group said the final investment decision (FID) was “surprising,” commenting: “Although the final 35 well development plan is down from last November’s plan to drill 45 wells, we view the project FID as an encouraging sign the deepwater is not dead.”

“We note that excluding eight owner-operated rigs (two midwater drillships, six jackups), ONGC has 34 rigs contracted currently (one drillship, two semisubs, 30 jackups, one drill barge),” the analyst firm said, noting that “neither of these semisubs is rated to work in more than 2,000 ft [610 m] water depth.”

Bidders were asked to submit their final responses earlier this week, suggesting multi-year rig awards could be forthcoming, Evercore said.


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