Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) will start natural gas production from MJ field - the third and the last set of discoveries that the firm is developing in the eastern offshore KG-D6 block - in the last quarter of 2022 to raise overall output by about two-thirds.
In an investor presentation announcing first quarter earnings, RIL said it has completed its first offshore installation campaign and a second one would commence in November this year.
"Drilling and completions of wells (are) underway," it said. "First gas expected by 3Q FY23."
RIL and its partner BP plc of the UK plan to use a floating production system at high-sea in the Bay of Bengal to bring to production the deepest gas discovery in the KG-D6 block.
The MJ-1 gas find is located about 2,000 metres directly below the Dhirubhai-1 and 3 (D1 and D3) fields - the first and the largest fields in KG-D6 block. MJ-1 is estimated to hold a minimum of 0.988 Trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of contingent resources.
The field also has oil deposits which would be produced using a floating system, called FPSO.
"FPSO and subsea production systems (are) on track," the company said in the presentation.
RIL-BP are developing three deep-water gas developments in block KG-D6 - R Cluster, Satellite Cluster and MJ - which together are expected to produce around 30 million standard cubic meters per day of natural gas by 2023, meeting up to 15 per cent of India's gas demand.
R-Cluster started production in December 2020 and the Satellite Cluster came onstream in April. While R-Cluster is expected to reach plateau gas production of about 12.9 mmscmd in 2021, Satellite Cluster will have a peak output of 6 mmscmd. The MJ field will have a peak output of 12 mmscmd.
RIL said average production in April-June this year was 16.6 mmscmd from KG-D6.
The firm had in three rounds of bidding sold 18 mmscmd of gas from the fields, it said.
Oil-to-telecom conglomerate RIL has so far made 19 gas discoveries in the KG-D6 block. Of these, D-1 and D-3 - the largest among the lot - were brought into production from April 2009 and MA, the only oilfield in the block, was put to production in September 2008. While the MA field stopped producing in 2019, the output from D-1 and D-3 ceased in February 2020. Other discoveries have either been surrendered or taken away by the government for not meeting timelines for beginning production.
RIL is the operator of the block with a 66.67 per cent participating interest and BP holds a 33.33 per cent stake.
The company in the presentation said it got USD 3.62 per million British thermal unit for KG-D6 gas in the April-June quarter. This was lower than USD 3.99 per mmBtu it got in the previous quarter.
For the gas it produces from below coal seams in CBM blocks in Madhya Pradesh, it got USD 6.01. In January-March, the firm had got USD 5.20 per mmBtu for coal-bed methane (CBM).
The rates vary because the firm used different pricing formulas to price the gas from KG-D6 and CBM.
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