IntecSea Malaysia will help ONGC develop the KG-DWN-98/2 block in the Krishna Godavari (K-G) basin off the east coast of India.
This comes after the announcement on 9 November that India's upstream oil regulator, the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) in the Petroleum Ministry, approved the commerciality of the oil and gas discoveries in the Northern Discovery Area (NDA).
The K-G basin is regarded as the largest natural gas basin in India, and covers about 50,000 sq km off the coast of Andhra Pradesh, fed by the Krishna River and Godavari River. ONGC's KG-DWN-98/2 block is adjacent to KG-DWN-98/3, also known as the KG-D6 (Dhirubhai-6) block owned by Reliance-BP-Niko consortium, and currently producing.
In 1999, a consortium of Cairn India, Statoil, and ONGC won the KG-DWN-98/2 block, also known as KG-D5, in the first New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP) bidding round, NELP-1. It's located in the Bay of Bengal, shown in the map at right from India's DGH.
Cairn made four discoveries: Padmavati, Kanakdurga, N-1 and R-1 (Annapurna), and then sold 90% interest in the block to ONGC in 2005. It later sold its remaining 10% interest. ONGC made six more discoveries and also drilled a well in ultradeep water.
ONGC divided the 7295sq km block into two parts: the Northern and Southern Discovery Areas. It made six more discoveries in the NDA: E-1, A1, U1, W1, D-1 and KT-1, and also drilled a well in ultradeep water with Transocean's Dhirubhai Deepwater KG1 drillship: UD-1, to 2841m TD. ONGC now intends to invest $9 billion in the NDA. It has already spent $1.3 billion on the block, made four oil finds and seven gas discoveries.
The company reported in September that it would begin gas production in 2018 and oil production in 2019, with a peak output of 4.5 million tonnes oil/yr, the first significant oil production from the east coast.
The Hindu Business Line reported that the company "wants to see hydrocarbons flowing from the block not later than April 2018." It also said that the block has been estimated to hold 500 million tonnes of oil and oil equivalent gas — 100 mt of oil and 445 billion cu. m or 1.33 tcf of gas — which makes it ten times as big as the Ravva field in the K-G basin. The block could potentially produce 90,000 bo/d (4.5 million tonnes/yr).
Sources in ONGC said “The consultant [IntecSea] is drawing up drilling plans and scheduling year-wise rig deployment plans,” The Hindu Business Line reported on 17 November.
IntecSea has worked for India previously, on the Oman to India deepsea gas pipeline project in the 1990s.
ONGC to invest $9B off India, 8 January 2014
Transocean water-depth drilling record, 9 July 2013