Govt plans to raise RLNGby 400mmcfd till yearend | Business | thenews.com.pk

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Govt plans to raise RLNGby 400mmcfd till yearendISLAMABAD: The petroleum division of energy ministry is working on a strategy to further add around 400 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) of re-gasified liquefied natural gas (RLNG) into the distribution network of the two state companies by the end of this year, a senior official told APP.“We have to bring 400mmcfd LNG in the system by December; out of which 200mmcfd is guaranteed as tender has already been floated to ensure transparency,” the official said.Currently, he said, around 1,200mmcfd RLNG is being added into the distribution network to meet the country’s energy needs. The capacity of floating storage and re-gasification units is also being increased, he added.Answering a question, the official said America and Australia are emerging as the largest exporters of LNG in the world. He highlighted the importance of imported LNG, liquefied petroleum gas and trans-country gas pipeline projects with Turkmenistan, Russia and Iran.Oil and gas exploration and production companies could not hit any major discovery since long, while the country’s existing hydrocarbon reserves are depleting gradually, he added.Discussing the government strategy to step up oil and gas exploration activities in potential areas, the official said a proposal is under consideration to hold road shows in various countries for award of oil and gas exploration blocks. “We are in search for suitable destinations.”Six to seven events, including Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference and energy moots in Calgary and Moscow are scheduled to be held in coming months and these could be better platforms for the purpose.The official said such international events could prove fruitful for Pakistan to hold the road shows as delegations from across the world gather there and look into possibilities of future investments. They will be better get-together platforms instead of visiting country to country.However, he said prior to arranging the shows there is a need of revising the existing petroleum policy and establishing a frontier zone – high risk/high return zone and reviewing various rules.The official said the petroleum division has recently conducted bidding for 10 exploration blocks, out of which eight were awarded to qualified bidders. Bidding for 15 to 20 more blocks has been planned by the end of this year with an aim to step up oil and gas exploration activities and achieve self-sufficiency in the energy sector.Besides, he said, the government is preparing a summary for creating new oil and gas exploration zone in potential areas of erstwhile federally administered tribal areas and Balochistan. A summary would be presented before the Council of Common Interests for approval, he added.Explaining the existing exploration licencing zones, the official said the country has been divided into four zones: West Balochistan-Pishin-Potowar Basins, Kirthar, East Balochistan-Punjab platform-Suleman Basins, Lower Indus Basins and Indus and Makran Basins.Currently, the country’s total sedimentary area is around 827,268 square kilometers; out of which 320,741 kilometers or 39 percent of the area are under exploration.

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