LONDON - Pakistan has offered 53 blocks of oil and gas rich areas for exploration to multinational companies on the occasion of Pakistan oil and gas exploration promotion conference held in London. In his keynote address Prime Ministers Advisor on Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain highlighted huge untapped exploration potential in Pakistan as total endowment of hydrocarbons in Pakistan is estimated 27 billion barrels of oil and 280 trillion cubic feet of gas of which only 3.4pc of oil and 19pc gas has been explored so far. He said that with success ratio of 1:3 and highly attractive terms of engagement under new petroleum policy 2009 and availability of large number of acreages make Pakistan land of opportunities for hydrocarbon explorers. Pakistan comprises more than 800,000 sq km of offshore and onshore sedimentary basin (oil and gas rich) areas where only 742 exploratory wells have been drilled so far, these have resulted in more than 221 discoveries containing about one billion barrels of oil and 53 trillion cubic feet or 8 billion barrels oil equivalent of gas. Pakistans High Commissioner to UK Wajid Shamsul Hasan in his welcome address highlighted the significance of strategic location of Pakistan and said that the country being gateway to the energy rich Central Asia, the financially liquid Gulf States and the East Asian Tiger Economies remains and ideal destination for investment. He said that oil and gas sector in Pakistan has seen phenomenal growth. Over the past half century the petroleum industry has played a significant role in economic development by making large indigenous gas discoveries. He further informed that Pakistan meets about 15pc of its oil developed from local sources. Oil and gas are major components of Pakistans energy mix meeting over 79pc energy needs and therefore, successive governments since independence have attached high priority to these sections. He said that present democratic government seeks to promote foreign investment in upstream petroleum sector with the view to exploit indigenous hydrocarbon resources in an optimum manner for the benefit of the nation while maximising returns for the foreign investors. Special Secretary Petroleum and Natural Resources GA Sabir made a presentation on the salient features of Petroleum Policy 2009 and briefed about lucrative fiscal terms for on shore and off shore exploration. Zahid Hussain Chairman, Oil and Gas Development Corporation briefed on the geography of oil and gas rich areas of Pakistan. A large member of investors from UK and the multinational companies, already working successfully in Pakistan, participated in the conference.