LAHORE – The search for new hydrocarbon reservoirs in the country continued to remain muted in 1HFY12 as only 6 exploratory wells were spudded similar to that of last year, experts said.

According to them, circular debt and challenged security situation particularly in KPK and Balochistan continue to bode ill on the sector’s exploration program while some carry-over wells were also completed. During this period, E&P companies continue to focus on maximum utilization of their existing reservoirs, spudding 15 development/appraisal wells, a notch above 13 wells drilled in comparable period last year.

Pakistan Oilfields (POL) and Oil & Gas Development (OGDC) during 1HFY12 drilled one exploratory well each while Pakistan Petroleum (PPL) has yet to spud for new reserves.

Energy expert Nauman Khan said that during 1HFY12, sector spudded a total of 22 E&D wells accomplishing only 29% of the full year target of 76 wells. In the same period last year, the sector drilled 23% of its target of 80 wells. The activity continue to be skewed towards development activities, with 15 development wells as against full year target of 45, while only 7 exploratory wells were drilled versus FY12 target of  31 wells.

The listed sector has remained muted in their own operating lease with major dependency on their JV partners. POL spudded 1 exploratory well and no development well, while PPL was on the other end of spectrum, with company drilling 1 development well and no exploratory well. OGDC has recently started working on their 1st exploratory well of the year, while have spudded 6 development wells.

Amongst the last year carried over wells, major of them have concluded with not so encouraging results. It yielded only one discovery in the Zin block, with that also falling short of industry’s expectation. The major excitement of the year has come from discovery of augment reservoir size from Tal and Naspha block, with PPL and POL standing at prime beneficiaries.