THE country’s energy landscape appears to be bleak in the coming years as about eighty percent of oil and sixty seven percent of gas reserves have been consumed.
According to a report submitted by the Petroleum Division to the Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP), out of the oil reserves of 1,234 million barrels, Pakistan has consumed 985 million barrels, which constitutes 79.8% of the total.
Now, around 249 million barrels of reserves are left.The situation really indicates the lack of focus on new exploration and if this depletion continued, our import bill of energy will further increase which will add further burden on our economy.
Hence instead of spending money on projects aimed at appeasing the public, serious effort needs to be made to bring to use the country’s rich natural resources be it oil, gas, copper or gold.
Whilst Parliament passed a bill on Monday paving the way for revival of Reqo Dik project which indeed will immensely benefit both the province of Balochistan and Pakistan as a whole, the government should also pay attention towards accelerating oil and gas exploration.
Pakistan had been a major gas producer to meet the domestic needs. The country had been self-sufficient in the past but due to the launch of gas supply schemes on political considerations and other wastages besides less exploration, it has become an importer of liquefied natural gas (LNG) since 2015.
In the short term, we will have to rely on import of gas to meet domestic requirements but the ultimate objective should be making the country self-sufficient again.
It is very much possible. Both the provinces of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan are rich with seepages of petroleum products which is a low hanging fruit.
The country is estimated to have the potential of producing 200,000 oil barrels per day (BPD) and 1.2 billion cubic feet per day gas by launching exploration and production activities in the seepage areas.
In China’s Xinjian province, about 2 million barrels per day oil is being produced through seepage.
And the huge oil and gas reserves are produced in Virginia State of USA through seepage. Our authorities concerned will have to think on these lines to ensure a brighter future for the country.