MUSCAT: Oman’s total oil reserves consisted of approximately 4,791 million barrels at the end of 2018, rising by around 51 million barrels since the end of 2017, as shown by evaluation of the fields and additions from new discovery operations after deducting the quantity produced in 2018, said Salim bin Nasser al Aufi, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Oil and Gas.
Speaking during the annual press conference of the Ministry of Oil and Gas held at Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre on Wednesday, Al Aufi added that in terms of oil reserves, some 0.96 trillion cubic feet of gas has been added, bringing total gas reserves to approximately 24.65 trillion cubic feet at the end of 2018 after deducting the quantity produced in 2018. This marked a fall of some 0.31 trillion cubic feet.
He said that the average daily production of oil reached approximately 978,000 barrels of oil per day in 2018, confirming Oman’s commitment, along with Opec members, to cut production and to narrow the gap between supply and demand.
“Meanwhile, the average daily production of natural gas, plus the gas imported from Dolphin reached approximately 125 million cubic meters per day against 112 million cubic meters daily in 2017, of which 98 million cubic meters of non-associated gas and 22 million cubic meters of associated gas in addition to 5 million cubic meters of gas imported from Dolphin,” Al Aufi said.
He said the government continues to deploy efforts to encourage local and international companies for joint investments in the oil and gas sectors in all projects, ranging from exploration through production and development, creation of gas-dependent projects and
auxiliary services projects for the petroleum industry.
He said that the overall expenditure on oil and gas exploration, production and development stood at approximately $11.75 billion against $11.4 billion in 2017, distributed over some 69 per cent as capital expenses, including drilling, facilities etc, and some 31 per cent as operational costs.
Al Aufi further said that expenditure on the oil sector consisted of approximately $8.4 billion, whereas total expenditure on the gas sector reached approximately $3.3 billion.
He added that strategic projects and economic diversification plans in Oman are important and their aim is to make a significant contribution to sustainable development and through which the Ministry of Oil and Gas seeks to attract promising investment opportunities, expand investments and work with partners to capitalise on technical expertise to help boost local production and generate jobs, which have so far reached some 6,000.
In terms of marketing open concession blocks, Al Aufi added that six oil concession blocks were proposed in the first quarter of the present year. The ministry is currently endeavouring to notify local and international companies of the 2019 bidding and marketing round for oil concession blocks in hopes that its efforts will culminate in success following the positive results of the last two rounds where seven out of eight concession blocks were awarded.
In the context of the ministry’s in-country value (ICV) efforts and in collaboration with the operating companies of the oil and gas sector, the under-secretary said the ICV Programme has played a significant and active role in encouraging local companies to be involved in the manufacturing and different services pertaining to the oil and gas sector, and boosting the expenditure of companies on purchases and contracts with locally registered suppliers. The ICV statement showed steady improvement that amounted, in late 2018, to 40 per cent of the value of expenditure since first being applied, at a 2 per cent annual increase.
In their endeavour to Omanise products and services, operating companies managed to Omanise 26 out of 53 local investment opportunities identified in the Roadmap Strategy Study, including the manufacturing of large-diameter carbon steel pipes, tube sleeving, drill bits, and polymers used in enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and in assembling and repairing electrical submersible pumps.
Overall investment in these opportunities amounted to approximately $160 million, and around 840 jobs were created.
More than 30 investment opportunities were Omanised by the operators outside the Roadmap Strategy Study too, including manufacturing drilling, manufacturing salt, grinding and lifting equipment during well repair and assembling and repairing progressive cavity pumps as well as repairing some of the equipment of lifting machinery.