Oil and Gas Exploration and Production in Pakistan - an Overview
To review exploration, the Government of Pakistan (GoP) created Oil and Gas Development Corporation (OGDC) in 1961 under the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources.
In its early period, the corporation was equipped with Russian technology and assisted by their experts. During the 1960s, major effort was devoted to geological survey of parts of the huge sedimentary basins. Simultaneously, exploration activity was also carried out on a limited scale. OGDC made its first gas discovery at Sari, district Dadu of Sindh province. In 1966 it was followed by an oil discovery at Toot, near Pindi Ghaeb, district Attock in 1968
In line with the objective of its raising and by virtue of its performance, OGDC succeeded In promoting new and Increased interest in the geology of Pakistan and a number of foreign companies acquired exploration licences in late 70's Thus the company became the trend-setter of the country for the multinational oil and gas exploration activities being witnessed today In July 1989, after seeing successful performance of OGDC, the Government off-loaded the company from the Federal Budget and allowed it to manage its activities with selfgenerated funds.
As a national oil company, OGDCL has a role to play In steering and expanding the exploration activities for oil and gas and assist in building up a strong economic foundation for the country.
The biggest asset of the company is its highly qualified and dedicated pool of professionals, a sound operational and equipment base and state of the art seismic technology. OGDCL's technical services division and producing fields are prime revenue generating source coupled with skilled, experienced experts and staff.
OGDCL has already commenced seeking the local and foreign market for sourcing out its Technical Support Services to earn revenues for the government on the one hand and finance its exploration and production ventures on the other. OGDCL is guided by its Mission Statement 2000, adopted for the Company, which reads: "To adopt and maintain a distinct commercial orientation with a balanced, efficient and competitive structure to meaningfully explore and exploit indigenous resources for optimum production of oil and gas besides seeking opportunities abroad".
Exploration Production and Field Development
Historically, 155 exploratory wells have been drilled by OGDCL in the country since its inception leading to 49 discoveries, 33 of which were of oil and 16 gas OGDCL not only carries out exploration and development activities on its own but has also entered into jointventures foroil and gas exploration. Presently, OGDCL is 100% owner in two concessions. In addition, it is the operator as well as a working interest owner in 16 concessions and partner in another 19 concessions operated by other oil companies. Today, OGDCL is one of the principal explorers and producers of oil and gas in the country.
After its first gas discovery at Sari gas field in 1965-66, OGDCL, followed it by an oil discovery at Toot in 1967-68 In the 1970s OGDCL improved its technology and re-evaluated potential prospects. In the pastten years it drilled eighty wells out of which only seven turned out to be commercially viable Thus a substantial amount of money. averaging US$5.00 million perwellwere lost and written of against these dry holes. Detailed analysis revealed that, during the period, oil and gas exploration activities by OGDCL were undertaken in a haphazard and ill-planned manner, often with the purpose of keeping the company's drilling resources occupied aimlessly. However, learning lessons from the past, it was decided by the present management that in future the Company would not prematurely indulge in this costly activity and will undertake drilling after technical feasibility and risk studies had been completed and the survey data thoroughly processed and analyzed, thus ensuring that a very calculated risk is taken when physical drilling operations are commenced. …