ALEGRIA, Cebu: A natural gas and oil field here that is operated by a Chinese mining company began commercial production on Saturday, which the Department of Energy (DoE) expects would aid in the Philippines’ development.
In an interview during the commencement ceremony that he and President Rodrigo Duterte led, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said the Alegria Oil Field—operated by Hong Kong-based China International Mining Petroleum Ltd. Co. (CIMP) and its partners Skywealth Group Holdings Ltd. and Phil-Mal Energy International Inc.—would not only help the local community hosting it, but also the country.
“The quantity of [the oil it will produce] is still not that big, but that will be enough to power some [cement and canning factories], and that would help us also save dollars,” he added.
According to the Energy chief, an oil field would be enough to energize a power plant with a generating capacity of about 3.5 to 5 megawatts (MW).
“It’s small, but that is more than the requirement of the host community and the neighboring community,” he said.
According to CIMP Assistant Country Manager Edgar Benedict Cutiongco, the field will yield about 200 barrels of oil a day, and these can be sold to bunker-fired plants and refineries.
The field’s lifespan is about 19 years, and covers 197,000 hectares, 42,749 of which are devoted to production, he said.
The company plans to extract about 1,000 barrels a day, which would translate to about 3 million barrels a day during its lifespan, Cutiongco added.
“We’re looking at around 19 wells… We have a development plan to develop the whole field,” the CIMP official said.
The field’s opening came two months after the DoE signed a joint declaration of commerciality (JDC) with CIMP in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City.
Exploration and drilling in the field began in 2009, and has a $30.80-million (P1.6-billion) investment under Service Contract 49.
“Based on the development plan crafted after initial testing, the natural gas and oil production of the field may last until 2037,” the department said then in a statement.
The DoE is currently monitoring six exploration wells drilled by CIMP and its partners. The first with completed in October 2014 and the last in March.
These wells have potential commercial quantities of 27.93 million barrels of oil (MMBO), with a possible production recovery of 3.35 MMBO.
This translates to an estimated 12 percent of total oil in place or reserve.