Vol 3, PW 3 (03 Mar 99) Exploration & Production

Most expect Indias Krishna Godavari to attract maximum attention under the New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP).

ONGCs Krishna Godavari Project, Headquartered at Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh, is currently focusing attention on the potential of two offshore gas wells, located in a former Amoco concession. The wells are GS-15-4 and GS-23.

Both are located 15-20km off the coast of Amalapuram, north of the Ravva oilfield operated by Cairn Energy. Production plans are advancing fast.

A deadline for the submission of bids to construct two platforms and a gas pipeline is set for 30 March. An award is expected in August.

Front runners for the $20m contract are Larsen & Toubro and Metallurgical & Engineering Consultants (MECON). First production of gas is expected to begin between December 2000 and March 2001 (when production platforms are complete).

Petrowatch learns combined production from GS-15-4 and GS-23 will be around 300,000 cubic metres a day (10.65m cubic feet a day). ONGC also hopes to increase crude and condensate production from the area but admits that it is mainly "a gas play".

The area around GS-15-4 and GS-23 already produces 5,000 b/d of crude. ONGC remains optimistic of a bigger find in the immediate vicinity.

So far, it has had mixed results from six wells drilled nearby, with disappointing production at 500 b/d from two zones. No firm decision has yet been made on who will purchase the ONGC gas from GS-15-4 and GS-23.

In past times, GAIL was the only choice. In todays de-regulated climate ONGC has the option of approaching end users direct.