Thailand Oil Company Plans Oil and Gas Exploration in Burma

PTT Exploration & Production (PTTEP), Thailand’s national developer of oil and gas, recently announced that it plans to acquire and spend around $12 billion USD abroad in the coming five years for oil exploration and production as well as for purchasing fresh assets.

The company plans to allocate 20 percent of the total amount raised towards oil investments in Southeast Asia, and most of the budget will be set for Burma, particularly the gas field of Zawtika in the Gulf of Martaban.

Over $2 billion is being allocated for Myanmar’s Zawtika field as well as for oil exploration in the company’s other licenses and possibly newly ¬†acquired fields, according to an executive of PTTEP, who spoke anonymously.

The executive added that Myanmar will stay Thailand’s main natural gas source, and will actually grow when the field of Zawtika starts producing.

Aside from Zawtika, the company is performing oil drilling and exploratory surveys in other blocks, such as M-3, M-7 and M-11 located in the offshore area of the Gulf of Martaban. Aside from these, exploratory surveys and drilling will also be performed on two blocks located in the onshore region of Naypyitaw, in central Burma.

The field of Zawtika, with proven oil reserves of not less than 1.7 trillion cubic feet, is set to produce its first quantities of natural gas toward the close of this year. The anticipated initial production is 300 million cubic feet daily, and 80 percent will be moved to Thailand through a pipeline. The remaining production is allocated for Burma.