ONGC to Complete Bombay High North Project Early

ONGC is set to complete the Bombay High North redevelopment project six months ahead of schedule in December 2005. The development is expected to lead to a spurt in the company's crude production beginning the fourth quarter of the current year. Production will increase further once redevelopment of Bombay High South is completed in 2006.

Commissioned 30 years ago, Bombay High alone contributes 40 per cent of ONGC's crude production. Another 14 fields produce 35 per cent of the total. The remaining 100 fields contribute just 25 per cent.

ONGC had launched a redevelopment project in Bombay High North and South in February and September 2001 respectively to restrict a drop in production as well as improve the recovery factor. The total project cost was estimated to be in the region of Rs 8,200 crore. The redevelopment project was launched following a drop in production from 20 million tons to 12 million tons a year.

According to sources, the project is expected to improve the recovery factor by 4 per cent yielding an extra 76 million tons (mt) of oil and oil equivalent gas for a period of 20 years. Of the two fields, Bombay High South is the larger one and is scheduled to produce an additional 45.6 mt during its life. The total investment in the project is expected to be recovered in five years.

Being implemented in phases, the project has already led to an increase in production from India's only large oil field. Following completion of the redevelopment project, the recovery factor from the field will improve from 28 per cent to 31 per cent. According to a rough estimate, every percentage increase in recovery will generate an additional revenue of more than Rs 3,000 crore for the company.