CNPC overseas output growth slows to 3.27pc

PUBLISHED : Friday, 09 January, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 09 January, 2009, 12:00am

China National Petroleum Corp's (CNPC) overseas production set a record last year, although growth slowed.

The parent of listed PetroChina, the country's largest oil and gas producer, recorded output of 62.2 million tonnes of crude oil abroad last year, the company said. That was up 3.27 per cent from 60.23 million tonnes in 2007.

However, the growth rate slowed from 11.54 per cent in 2007 and 50 per cent in 2006, the year output was boosted by the acquisition of PetroKazakhstan.

Overseas natural gas production totalled 6.7 billion cubic metres last year, it added, without giving a comparison with 2007.

CNPC did not specify how much of the output it owned, compared with its partners, based on its stake ownership.

PetroChina owns most of CNPC's oil exploration and production assets, except for those in politically sensitive nations such as Sudan.

CNPC's projects in Sudan have been criticised by human rights activists, who claim its investment could help the Sudanese government fund the genocide of ethnic minorities. Some CNPC oil workers have also been killed after being kidnapped in Sudan.

CNPC said output from its Sudan 1/2/4 and 3/7 oil blocks each exceeded 11 million tonnes. A year earlier, it said production at the 1/2/4 block reached 13.5 million tonnes while 3/7 had 10.02 million tonnes.

It did not give an explanation for the 1/2/4 block's output decline. The company's spokesman would not comment.

CNPC said its projects in Kazakhstan, Indonesia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela had all exceeded targets.

The latest data comes as the Ministry of Land and Resources said in a national resource mining plan for 2008-15 report that the mainland may be required to import 60 per cent of its crude oil by 2020, up from 50 per cent at present.

This assumes exploration efforts are not strengthened and less energy-intensive methods of economic development are not adopted.

Crude oil demand is forecast to reach 500 million tonnes in 2020. Domestic production amounted to 186.66 million tonnes in 2007.

By 2010, the ministry has set a target for the industry to discover six new oil fields each with at least 100 million tonnes of geological reserves, as well as six to eight gas fields, each with reserves of at least 100 billion cubicmetres.

Between 2011 and 2015, 10 more oil fields and eight to 10 gas fields of the same scale are targeted.

Record volume

CNPC's overseas output of crude oil last year reached, in tonnes: 62.2m



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