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ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Petroleum Ltd (PPL) — the country’s second largest hydrocarbon producer — on Wednesday announced that it had crossed one billion cubic feet equivalent (BCFE) per day of production level, up 10 per cent against a year before.

“This is a significant recovery because the production has been going down for the last seven to eight years, due mainly to decline in flagship Sui gas field,” a company official said. This accounts for more than 20pc of the country’s total oil and gas production, he said.

While the output kept fluctuating on a daily basis, the company crossed one BCFE per day a few days ago, resulting in an overall production increase of more than 10pc during the current year as compared to 2014-15, the official added.

The company made six discoveries and drilled 12 exploratory wells in 2015-16

This has been made possible largely due to the company’s structural reorganisation to an asset-based hybrid set-up in mid-2015, enabling renewed focus to optimise reserve replacement and production from mature assets and fields, the company said in a statement released on Wednesday.

Notable among these were drilling a record 23 operated wells, including 11 development wells — four each in Sui and Kandhkot, two in Adhi and one in Gambat South. Also, production efficiencies were maximised mainly through revamping of Sui compressors and work over jobs on existing wells in various fields and commissioning of new production facilities at Adhi and Gambat South.

The company’s gas production peaked at 1.001 billion cubic feet per day for two years in 2006-08 as condensate output peaked at 75,644 barrels. The production since then had maintained a steady decline to 825 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) of gas in 2014-15 and condensate of almost 50,000 tonnes per day in 2013-14.

The PPL said it arrested the annual historic production decline of 6pc from the Sui gas field and reversed the fall with production being around 5pc higher than 2014-15. It was also able to increase gross production from Adhi and Kandhkot fields from 84 and 159 million cubic feet equivalent (MMCFE) per day in 2014-15 to 111 and 203 MMCFE per day, respectively, in 2016-17.

The company said it would continue to improve production efficiencies and implement an aggressive exploration programme to enhance production while maintaining a healthy reserve replacement ratio. During 2015-16 for instance, the company made six discoveries and drilled 12 exploratory wells in operated blocks and achieved 127pc reserve-replacement ratio.

Published in Dawn, December 8th, 2016