OIL Current Affairs - 2019
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Union Government has constituted six-member committee to look at selling as many as 149 small and marginal oil and gas fields of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Oil India Ltd (OIL) to private and foreign companies to boost domestic output.
The committee will be headed by NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar and includes Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha, Oil Secretary M M Kutty, Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and ONGC Chairman and Managing Director Shashi Shanker as members.
Constitution of this committee is follow up of October 2018meeting called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to review domestic production profile of oil and gas and the roadmap for cutting import dependence by 10% by 2022. In this meeting, Union Oil Ministry had made presentation showing that 149 smaller fields of ONGC, OIL and other explorers accounted for just 5% of domestic crude oil production. It was suggested at the meeting that these smaller fields could be given out to private and foreign firms, so that ONGC could concentrate on big ones where it could rope in technology partners through production enhancement contracts (PEC) or technical service arrangements. This was mainly large ONGC fields as contribute to 95% of its production and leave out the rest for private firms.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved survey project to acquire 48,243 Line Kilometer (LKM) 2D seismic data for appraisal of Indian sedimentary basins where limited data is available.
Sedimentary basin is a low area in the Earth’s crust, of tectonic origin, in which sediments accumulate. It can range from as small as hundreds of meters to large parts of ocean basins.
India has total 26 sedimentary basins covering area of 3.14 Million Sq Km (MSK) spread over onland, shallow water and deep water. 48% of total sedimentary basin area (about 1.502 MSK) does not have adequate geo-scientific data.
The project will be implemented by Oil India Limited (OIL) and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). Under it, survey work will be carried out in 24 States. OIL will conduct survey in North-Eastern States, while ONGC will cover remaining area. The entire project is likely to be completed by 2019-20.
After appraisal of these sedimentary basins, blocks will be offered for further exploration and production activities based on prospectivity of area. It will help in increasing the investments in domestic production of oil and gas and generate direct and indirect employment.
The appraisal of all unappraised areas is considered an important task to launch future Exploration and Production (E&P) activities. Data acquisition will provide initial insight into basins and help in planning future E&P activities. It will be useful in deciding focus areas of exploration activities in country and on basis of this primary data, E&P companies will be able take up further exploration activities in acreages allocated to them.