PTT expands search for liquid gold off Phuket

PHUKET: PTT Exploration and Production Plc (PTTEP) will continue its search for oil and natural gas reserves off Thailand’s Andaman Coast, with the possibility of drilling as early as 2013, a company project manager told the Phuket Governor on Thursday.

PTTEP project manager Bandit Chaisilboon, responsible for three concession areas (A4/48, A5/48 and A6/48) off the Andaman Coast, said PTTEP has divided its exploration program into two phases lasting three years each: February 2007 to February 2010 and February 2010 to February 2013.

The exploration areas, totaling about 70,000 square kilometers, lie 200 kilometers off the coast of Thailand’s six Andaman Coast provinces.

Mr Bandit met Phuket Governor Wichai Phraisa-ngop briefly on Thursday to update the exploration process in the first phase, which includes two-dimensional seismic reflection analysis over cross-sectional areas of 7,200 square kilometers as well as environmental impact assessment.

Conclusions of the first-phase survey work should be reached by February 2010, he said.

Mr Bandit said analysis of initial seismic work indicates some potential, but said further analysis is needed before actual drilling can begin due to the very high costs.

Due to the depths involved and other factors, costs could run as high as US$100 million per bore hole.

Earlier work by some foreign firms has indicated there is some petroleum in the concession areas, he said.

If PTTEP determines that significant liquid petroleum reserves are present they will definitely be developed, said Mr Bandit.

— Atchaa Khamlo

Phuket News

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