PNOC eyes ‘next Malampaya’ in Mindanao


Is our energy sector facing a bleak future?
Fitch Solutions Country Risk & Industry Research has noted a continuing drop in the Malampaya field’s gas reserves and lack of investment in new exploration although the state-led Philippine National Oil Co. (PNOC) thinks otherwise.
“We have several areas where we think are very under-explored. We actually have three sedimentary basins all located in Mindanao—one in Agusan, Davao to the east; the one in Cotabato, the center of the mainland; and then the Sulu Sea farther to the west,” says PNOC-Exploration Corp. (PNOC-EC) vice-president for upstream operations Jaime A. Bacud in a virtual briefing on Thursday.


MANILA — In an outlook published last month, Fitch disclosed that the gradual decline in gas production from the field is already driving up electricity costs and causing rotational power interruptions across all major islands.

Mr Bacud said the region might be the location of the country’s next indigenous gas field, following the impending depletion of the offshore Malampaya project.

“We still think that there [is] natural gas potential for these areas and it could be where we could find the next Malampaya,” says Mr Bacud.

The Philippines still has plenty of untapped oil and gas resources, the utilization of which can bring the country closer to its goal of attaining energy independence, he adds.

It was learned that the Malampaya gas field provides power to five natural gas-fed plants in Luzon, accounting for 30 percent of the island’s power generation. The offshore project also serves 20 percent of national demand. (JD/Headline PH)


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