Friday, February 23, 2024

SKK Migas targets US$ 1.8 billion exploration investment in 2024

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Indonesia’s upstream oil and gas regulatory task force, SKK Migas, is eyeing a substantial boost in exploration investments, targeting US$ 1.8 billion in 2024, equivalent to around IDR 28 trillion.

This ambitious goal represents a twofold increase compared to the realized exploration investments of US$ 900 million in 2023. The target is set following comprehensive discussions and agreements within the framework of work, program, and budget (WP&B) negotiations with contractors or KKKS.

Benny Lubiantara, Deputy for Exploration Development and Management of SKK Migas, highlighted the evolving landscape of exploration targets, emphasizing a significant shift in focus since 2023.

The prospective reserves now range from 100 to 500 million barrels of oil equivalent (MMBOE). Looking ahead to 2024, the target is set even higher, surpassing 500 MMBOE, prompting exploratory drilling in both new areas and deep-sea locations.

“For 2024, the targeted prospects are even more significant, exceeding 500 MMBOE. Therefore, exploration well drilling this year will cover new onshore and offshore areas.” Benny said in an official statement.

The US$ 1.8 billion exploration investment target is allocated for drilling 50 exploration wells, signifying a substantial 31 percent increase compared to the realized drilling activities of 38 exploration wells in 2023.

The performance of exploration drilling has been on an upward trajectory over the last four years. In 2020, there were 28 exploration wells drilled, and by 2023, this number had risen to 38 wells.

“We are grateful that in 2023, we successfully discovered a total resource of 1,711.77 MMBOE, the largest in the last 23 years or since the discovery in the Abadi field in 2000,” stated Benny.

Highlighting the increasing investments in exploration, Benny emphasized the importance of the discoveries of big fish-giants and deep-sea reserves. He stressed that exploration activities and investments would be further heightened in 2024.

“In addition to massive investments, to achieve giant discoveries, the exploration target must shift from small-medium to medium-large,” he added.

Benny pointed out that the potential for upstream oil and gas lies in deep-sea exploration. Consequently, SKK Migas is consistently promoting exploration investments in deep-sea reserves.

Acknowledging the high risks associated with deep-sea drilling, he emphasized the need for meticulous calculations and precise execution.

“The journey to realize the exploration drilling investment target is still long; therefore, we continue to intensively coordinate with KKKS to ensure existing challenges are resolved, and the US$ 1.8 billion exploration investment can be realized as optimally as possible,” Benny concluded.

In 2023, SKK Migas, in collaboration with KKKS, achieved two significant discoveries in Geng North in East Kalimantan by ENI and Layaran-1 in South Andaman offshore North Sumatra by Mubadala Energy.

Benny highlighted the substantial costs involved in deep-sea drilling. For instance, drilling in Geng North by ENI incurred costs of up to US$100 million for one well, equivalent to approximately IDR 1.5 trillion. Similarly, Mubadala Energy invested US$ 93.5 million, approximately IDR 1.4 trillion, in Layaran-1.

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