Due to the growing energy crisis, Pakistan has been forced to depend upon imported gas. But Pakistan may have found one of the biggest hydrocarbon reserves with potential deposits of 1 trillion cubic feet, in Balochistan’s Margand block owned by Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL).
PPL has already made the announcement of a hydrocarbon discovery in its first exploratory well Margand X-1, located in Kalat district, Balochistan. But the actual size of the hydrocarbon reserves in the block has not been announced yet.
On June 30th, 2019 Margand X-1 was drilled. It reached a depth of 4,500 meters inside Chiltan limestone. Modular Dynamics Testing (MDT) was carried out on the basis of wireline logs. This proved the hydrocarbon presence.
A flow of 10.7 million cubic feet of gas per day was seen in the Drill Stem Test (DST) of the well. It was at 64/64 inches choke size with flowing wellhead pressure at 516 pounds per square inch (psi) and 132 barrels of liquid per day.
Due to low wellhead gas prices and bureaucratic snags, there has been no big hydrocarbon reserves discovery since 2000. Because of small hydrocarbon discoveries, many companies like British Petroleum, Niko Resources, and Malaysia-based Petronas have pulled out of Pakistan.
In the earlier government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) not much attention was given to the exploitation of domestic oil and gas reserves. Instead of it, contracts for liquefied natural gas (LNG) import was signed.
Presently, Pakistan is focusing on imported gas to control the shortfall due to the absence of major discoveries.
An official said, “Initial estimates based on the structure of the Margand block reveal that this block has one trillion cubic feet of reserves.”
Adding, “Pakistan will save $900 million due to LNG import substitution if PPL flows reach 300 mmcfd.”