ONGC will invest Rs 31,000 crore over the next three years to explore the Indian sedimentary basin for fuel reserves.
“The company has drawn up a comprehensive roadmap to further intensify its exploration campaign, allocating a capital expenditure of about Rs 31,000 crore in the next three fiscal years. This is 150 per cent of its exploration expenditure of Rs 20,670 crore in the last three fiscals during FY2019-22,” ONGC said as it firmed up its ‘Future Exploration Strategy’.
ONGC also plans to leverage international collaborations with reputed global majors for which talks are at an advanced stage. However, it did not elaborate on this point.
India is 85 per cent dependent on imports to meet its oil needs and half of the natural gas requirement is shipped from abroad. Finding and producing more oil and gas domestically will cut this reliance, helping insulate the domestic market from volatility in international energy prices.
“This exploration intensification includes activities funded through ONGC’s internal programmes as well as funded and facilitated by the government,” the statement said.
Under the internal programme, ONGC is trying to probe around 1,700 million tonnes of oil and oil equivalent gas (MMTOE) of yet-to-find (YTF) reserves during FY2022-25.
The activities here include a state-of-the-art 2D and 3D seismic survey, followed by drilling of around 115-120 wells with an estimated outlay of Rs 10,000 crore every year for the next three years.
In addition, the government has ensured 96,000 square kilometres of area that was previously a “No Go” zone be available for exploration.
This will help ONGC to achieve its goal to bring 5 lakh square kilometre under exploration by 2025.
The PSU will collect 2D seismic data in three sectors — the west coast, east coast and Andaman offshore.
ONGC will complete the technical bid opening for seismic data acquisition by June 2022. In Andaman Basin, ONGC presently holds two blocks for exploration under the Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP).
“The Government of India has also acquired seismic data in some sectors within ‘No-Go’ areas and few prospects are already identified,” it said, without giving details.
ONGC plans to drill six wells in the next three years (two under ONGC committed work program and four through government funding).
Reputed global companies/consultants are being invited for the assessment of the basin for future exploration and exploitation plans.
“ONGC's internal program has three components - re-exploration of mature basins, consolidation of emerging basins and probing of emerging and new basins," the statement said.