Muscat: Officials are in talks with Occidental Oman to provide steam to extract heavy oil from Mukhaizna oilfield, a senior official at the Ministry of Oil and Gas has said.
More steam-related projects for oil recovery are expected for the oilfield, which produces 126,000 barrels a day, the Ministry of Oil and Gas said.
Glasspoint Oman is currently working on solar steam project to extract heavy oil in PDO’s Amal West oilfield through its enclosed trough technology.
“Mukhaizna is by far the biggest and they are in discussion with Oxy for the provision of steam for that project. They, however, will not be able to provide all the steam as its way more than what solar can generate,” said Salim Al Awfi, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Oil and Gas.
The Sultanate’s daily average oil output in 2016 grew to 1,004,300, which was partly due to production increase in fields, such as Block 53 Mukhaizna, that grew production by more than 5,000 barrels a day to 126,900. Occidental Oman has implemented an aggressive drilling and development programme in the Mukhaizna oilfield, including a major pattern steam flood for EOR. Occidental reported a 16 per cent rise in production levels since they assumed operations in 2016.
Located 500 kilometres from Muscat, the field holds an estimated heavy crude oil reserve of two billion barrels. Occidental is the project operator for the Mukhaizna field, while Oman Oil Exploration Company (OOCEP), Shell, Liwa Energy, Total and Partex are other participants.
Oman is focusing heavily on EOR techniques to extract oil heavy oil, which is harder and more expensive. Last year, Omani SME EOR LLC had announced that it will be starting operations in Oman using Superheat technology that could make it cheaper for Oman to extract these heavy oil reserves.
Al Aufi was speaking during the announcement of opening of two institutes by the Oman oil Company in partnership with Petrofac and Schlumberger. Speaking to the Times of Oman, Ibrahim Al Harthi, managing director at Takaful Oman said the institute will train young graduates in the energy industry that will include EOR and renewables in the future.