UAE announces major new oil, gas discoveries

Bloomberg
Bloomberg

The United Arab Emirates, a leading OPEC producer, on Monday announced "significant" oil and gas discoveries and launched a new pricing mechanism for Abu Dhabi flagship Murban crude.

The Gulf state's highest energy decision-making body, the Supreme Petroleum Council (SPC), said the new discoveries included seven billion barrels of crude oil and 58 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

That raised UAE crude oil reserves to 105 billion barrels, overtaking neighbour Kuwait for the world's sixth largest oil deposits, Abu Dhabi National Oil Co said in a statement.

Natural gas reserves were also boosted to 273 trillion cubic feet (7.7 billion cubic metres), ADNOC said. In addition, the UAE discovered about 160 trillion cubic feet of unconventional natural gas.

UAE pumps about three million barrels of oil per day (bpd) and produces some 10.5 billion cubic feet of raw natural gas, according to ADNOC.

"We are very pleased and honoured to have enabled the UAE to move from the seventh to the sixth-largest oil and gas reserves in both global rankings," said ADNOC CEO Sultan al-Jaber.

The SPC also gave its approval to list ADNOC's Murban crude oil on an internationally recognised exchange, with the goal of boosting the UAE's position as an energy provider, particularly to fast-growing Asian markets.

"The initiative will enable our customers and other market participants to better price, manage and trade their purchases of Murban," which pumps some 1.7 million bpd, Jaber said.

Last year, ADNOC granted concession rights in existing and new oilfields and earmarked some $132 billion to invest in the oil sector over the next five years.

ADNOC plans to boost crude output capacity to four million bpd in 2020 and to five million bpd a decade later.

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