Pertamina Plans to Boost Production

Pertamina plans to boost oil production to 52,000 barrels per day (bpd) this year from 44,370 bpd last year, a company director said on Tuesday. "Our exploration activities have added to our oil reserves significantly. We plan to increase our oil production to 52,000 bpd in 2002 from 44,370 bpd," Pertamina's upstream director Iin Arifin Takhyan said. "We are optimistic we can further increase our oil reserves in future."

Pertamina has said it has around one billion barrels of oil reserves. Indonesia, Asia's only OPEC member, produced 1.13 million bpd of crude oil and 144,000 bpd of condensate in March, unchanged from February. Indonesia assumes oil production of 1.32 million bpd in its 2002 budget.

In a separate issue, Iin said Pertamina was ready to pay for its share of any exploration activities in the Donggala and Tanjung Aru oil blocks in the Makassar Straits. Speculation in recent months suggested that Pertamina might not contribute its share of costs, thereby putting more of a burden on the foreign companies. "Pertamina has a 15 percent stake in each of these blocks as a participating interest. Therefore, we are ready to pay 15 percent of any exploration costs there," Iin said. TotalFinaElf is operator of the Donggala block while Amerada Hess is operator of the Tanjung Aru block.