Malaysia's Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) estimates that half of the country's producing fields have enhanced oil recovery (EOR) potential, the company's executive vice-president (Exploration and Production Business) Wee Yiaw Hin told Bernama news agency.
“Of these, currently more than 10 EOR projects are in the pipeline at various maturation stages. An estimated total investment of $14 billion (approximately MYR 46 billion) is required to execute these EOR projects,” Wee said.
EOR has emerged as a solution for Petronas as Malaysian oil fields are now moving into the mature phase after more than three decades of exploration and production, which has resulted in declining production. However, EOR projects are capital- and technology-intensive with many risks and skilled players are needed to unlock the hydrocarbon potential.
“We are optimistic about the EOR potential, which will be implemented in phases over the medium and long term, with many programs to be rolled out over the next 10 years,” Wee said.
Petronas had allocated around $334.8 million (MYR 1.1 billion) until 2018 for it’s E&P (exploration and production) Technology Centre arm to develop innovative and applicable technology to rejuvenate mature oil fields, while raising production at maturing oilfields.
“These areas pose large and complex challenges on the technical and commercial fronts and innovations are required to lower overall costs, improve the performance of applied technologies, as well as include the development of new technology,” he added.
The Tapis oil field, offshore Terengganu, is the first in Malaysia to employ EOR technology, with the $3.1 billion (MYR 10 billion) project scheduled to commence operations in the first half of this year. The EOR project will increase Tapis' production to between 25,000 to 35,000 barrels per day in 2016 and 2017 from about 3,000 to 4,000 barrels per day currently.
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