Essar denies Raniganj East output decline

Vol 20, PW 16 (04 May 17) Midstream & Downstream

Essar has rubbished rumours that gas production from its Raniganj East block is declining and adds it is on track to commission first gas supplies to the nearby 3m t/y Matix Fertilisers factory.

"We have begun pre-commissioning activities to supply gas to Matix which needs at least 1m cm/d," said an Essar source on May 2. "Raniganj East is today producing 920,000 cm/d which we are ramping up further." Matix, which has a factory at Panagarh in West Bengal, is owned by the family of Nishant Kanodia, son-in-law of Essar Group vice-chairman Ravi Ruia.

Our source adds Essar's biggest challenge will be to sustain production to Matix. He says the only decline in production at the block was at certain high volume wells and this was because of high well downtime, sand build-up and scaling.

Essar's contention of stable Raniganj East production is backed by DGH data showing that Raniganj produced 37.42m cubic metres (1.24m cm/d) in January, 30.63m cubic metres (1.02m cm/d) in February and 27.44m cubic metres (914,000 cm/d) in March. Essar has so far drilled and completed 348 wells at Raniganj exceeding its own target to drill and complete 290 wells.

Only four of the wells are yet to be hydrofracked, but the remaining 344 are producing. Of these 330 are connected to the gas gathering station.