Saudi Aramco, the Saudi oil giant, is making active efforts to explore and develop new gas reserves to meet the growing demand for electricity in the kingdom.
According to Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Ali Al-Naimi, “King Abdullah has given instructions to carry out more gas drilling and development operations to use gas, instead of oil, for electricity generation, as oil can be exported or kept for future generations”. The Saudi economy has been spurred through government reforms and active interest of private companies in various sectors of the economy. Higher economic activity has created a greater demand for electricity and placed pressure on current resources of power generation.
Aramco is currently drilling two new wells in Tabuk, which are expected to produce oil and gas in significant commercial quantities. The company is also using an advanced drilling ship to carry out operations in deep waters of the Red Sea. Efforts of Aramco have borne fruit in recent times as it was able to find double the amount of gas previously estimated in the Madyan gas well.
The company also plans to drill more wells to fully appraise the Madyan field. The gas field is expected to produce 75 million cubic feet a day of gas and 4,500 barrels a day of condensate for a 20-year period. In 2011, the average gas production of Aramco equaled 9.9 billion cubic feet per day, while gas reserves rose to 282.6 trillion standard cubic feet.
All analysts have their eyes set on the oil and gas exploration efforts in Saudi Arabia. The kingdom has an estimated one-fifth of the world’s proven oil reserves and is the largest global oil producer and exporter of total petroleum liquids. Boasting the world’s largest spare capacity, the country plays a key role in stabilizing the global oil market and investing in the development of its infrastructure.