South Korea has found a new offshore natural gas reservoir that is expected to hold about 40 billion cubic feet (1.133 billion cubic meters) of gas reserves. The new find in the Donghae-1 gas field, 36 miles off the southeastern city of Ulsan, should lift total natural gas reserves in South Korea to about 240 billion cubic feet. "While drilling a production well, KNOC found the unexpected gas reservoir," Lee Jin-Hong, an energy ministry official at the natural resource development division, said. "Since we are closely analyzing data about the reservoir, we will be able to get detailed results including amount of recoverable reserves around the end of September," he said.
It is hoped that the new gas would add about $200 million to the $1 billion in return revenue previously estimated from the country's only gas field. A KNOC spokesman said the corporation had not yet come up with plans on how to exploit the new find. KNOC, which found the Donghae-1 gasfield in 1998 after 30 years of exploration, is working on building production facilities. After construction is completed in 2003, the natural gas will be used in Ulsan and South Kyongsang Province for about 15 years.