UAE’s promising coastline is now inviting top bids for oil & gas exploration
The UAE has been recently trying to boost its economy by reinforcing non-oil sectors.
But oil apparently is still a huge part of its economy, as it should, and the country looks to be availing its coastline for oil & gas exploration.
Oil and gas concessions in Ras Al Khaimah and Abu Dhabi were revealed by Rass Al Khaimah Petroleum Authority (RAKPA) and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) respectively.
RAK: An unexplored treasure
The global interest in Ras Al Khaimah’s oil & gas is due to the proven hydrocarbon reserves in place, diverse exploration plays, easily accessible existing infrastructure, attractive production sharing terms, and commercialization plans.
In addition, a team of international experts is already working on the ground.
The 2018 RAK Licensing Round was launched on 1 April 2018 to attract regional and international companies aiming to expand their portfolios in the UAE, Reuters reported.
The licensing round offers seven areas, including four shallow water offshore blocs and three onshore blocs, Reuters added.
The licensing process remains open to interested parties until November 2018, according to Reuters, meaning companies are still able to register their interest in entering this attractive and stable territory.
Surrounded by very large producing oil and gas fields, Ras Al Khaimah has multiple working petroleum systems, RAKPA revealed in a statement.
However, it still remains an underexplored province.
Interested firms can also leverage existing petroleum infrastructure including pipelines and processing facilities, as well as ease of access to international and local markets.
Nishant Dighe, the Chief Executive of the RAK Petroleum Authority said: “The unique geology of Rass Al Khaimah, a result of the Hajar Mountains uplift, and existing oil and gas fields in close proximity, means the seven blocs available for exploration have great potential for as yet untapped hydrocarbons.”
“Ras Al Khaimah represents an interesting and inviting opportunity for oil and gas companies.”
3D seismic system
According to the statement published by RAKPA, the 2,200sq km of new 3D seismic, acquired in 2018 will be a game changer in creating regional understanding and unlocking Ras Al Khaimah exploration potential.
3D seismic data provides detailed information about fault distribution and subsurface structures.
A Computer-based interpretation and display of 3D seismic data allow for more thorough analysis than 2D seismic data.
Firms can also leverage existing petroleum infrastructure including pipelines and processing facilities, as well as ease of access to international and local markets.
Petroleum rights will be governed by a new Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement.
Six oil and gas blocs, Abu Dhabi
According to Reuters, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) revealed a month ago that it was launching a competitive exploration and production licensing round for six oil and gas blocs, in which it will hold the majority stake of 60%.
Two of the six blocks are offshore and four are onshore and estimates suggest they contain “substantial amounts of oil and gas”, ADNOC said in a statement.
Successful bidders will have the opportunity to explore and then develop and produce blocs with ADNOC.
In total, the 6 blocks comprise an area of 30,000 square kilometers.
Bids are due by October and the first bidding round is expected to conclude this year.
ADNOC CEO Sultan al-Jaber said the company had received an overwhelming response to the bidding round from energy companies.
Some of the blocks already have discoveries in place, with some containing ‘significant unconventional resource potential’, according to Adnoc.
MEED reported that there are 310 targeted reservoirs in the blocks from 110 prospects and leads.
Abdulmunim Saif Al Kindy, Adnoc’s Upstream Directorate chief revealed to MEED, “In the onshore blocks, we have 75 prospects and leads that contain 224 targeted reservoirs. In the offshore blocks, 36 prospects and leads that contain 83 targeted reservoirs. All blocks are in the proximity of existing infrastructure.”