Foreign investment needed to develop subsurface oil and gas deposits in Tajikistan

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Bakhtiyer Davlat

2008-10-24

DUSHANBE, Oct. 20 —Hopes for finding large hydrocarbon fields in Tajikistan are tied to the investments of large global companies, stated Professor Zafar Razykov, the pro-rector for science at the Tajikistan Mining and Metallurgical Institute. He was commenting on the plans of Tethys Petroleum, an international oil and gas production company, to rehabilitate gas fields in Tajikistan.

Tethys representatives in the Republic announced earlier this month that the firm had begun rehabilitation of the Komosomol-180 gas field located on the outskirts of Dushanbe. Upon completion of rehabilitation, gas production from each of the 18 wells of field will be 10 to 15 thousand cubic metres per day, which will partially cover Dushanbe’s needs.

According to estimates by specialists, oil and gas reserves in currently producing and proven fields are only four percent of the nation’s total potential resources. The existence of extremely significant oil and gas reserves, however, is at depths of 5 to 6 kilometres or more. Thus far Tajik drillers have reached only 5 km as their record depth. "In the current conditions of our Republic, even with a streamlined work flow, the whole chain from exploratory work to distribution of fuel to users will take at least four to five years" noted Razykov.

Earlier, Tethys signed an agreement with the Ministry of Industry and Energy to invest USD $25 million to explore and develop five hydrocarbon fields, the reserves of which are estimated to be 1.5 trillion cubic metres of gas. Potential gas reserves in Tajikistan total as much as 3 trillion cubic metres.

[Asia plus]

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