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SNOC launches seismic onshore survey

Sharjah National Oil Corporation (SNOC) has announced the launch of a new 500 square kilometre (195 sq. mile) 3D seismic onshore survey to identify potential deep reservoirs of oil and gas. Expected to be completed by the end of 2016, the survey will focus on an area located 40 kilometers southeast of Sharjah city, from Al Soyouh in the north and Al Madam in the south.

The Government of Sharjah established SNOC in 2010 to own and operate strategic energy assets in the Emirate of Sharjah. Assets include Al Saja’a, Moveyeid and Kahaif natural gas fields, the 700 MMSCFD (82,400 Sm³/h) capacity Saja’a Gas Plant, two marine loading terminals and various gas transmission and processing services.

Sharjah National Oil Corporation took over BP Sharjah Limited’s 40 percent stake in Al Saja’a oilfield in 2013, at the end of BP’s 35-year-interest concession. Last year, SNOC took over the operations of Al Saja’a oilfield located in Sharjah from Petrofac International after the end of a five-year operation and maintenance contract. As a result, SNOC is now both the owner and the administrator of Al Saja’a field, Sharjah’s largest producing gas development.

More recently, SNOC signed a deal with German company Uniper SE to import liquefied natural gas through Hamriyah port. Sharjah Electricity & Water Authority (SEWA) is set to receive gas supplies from Qatar according to an agreement signed between the UAE and Qatar last month.

The new 3D seismic survey is SNOC’s first exploration activity since the company was established and will covers a little explored area of Sharjah’s subsurface geology. 3D reflection seismology has become the standard in oil and gas exploration, providing more detailed information than 2D surveys and enabling better exploration in areas with more complex geology.

Oil was first discovered in Sharjah in the 1960s, with commercial production beginning in 1974. In 1978, Sharjah signed a petroleum concession agreement with Amoco Sharjah Oil Company (later BP Amoco Sharjah Oil Co.), allowing Amoco to explore for oil and gas in a 600,000 acre area onshore, leading to the discovery of the first Al Saja’a gas field in 1980 and another in 1982.

Saja’a gas plant processes gas from Al Saja’a field and supplies gas to Sharjah Electricity Water Authority and the Northern Emirates gas grid. In February of this year, Sharjah-based energy company Dana Gas began production from Sharjah’s Zora gas field, part of the Sharjah Western Offshore Concession. The Zora field supplies gas directly to SEWA via a processing plant in Hamriyah Free Zone.

Source: SNOC, various

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