Shell ex­pects Tapti fields’ de­com­mis­sion­ing in 2 yrs

Business Standard - - COMPANIES - GIREESH BABU

The Tapti fields un­der the Panna, Mukta and Tapti (PMT) joint ven­ture is es­ti­mated to be de­com­mis­sioned in two years, and is now at a stage where the loop­holes are be­ing plugged, said Nitin Prasad, chair­man, Shell Com­pa­nies in In­dia. The com­pany is ahead of its tar­get to have over 1,000 re­tail out­lets in the coun­try by 2027, he added.

Speak­ing to re­porters in the side­lines of the launch of a flat-pack all-ter­rain truck, The Ox, in In­dia, he said, “Tapti is now dry and is fac­ing de­com­mis­sion­ing. Last week, we signed an agree­ment that re­solved all the fi­nal is­sues. We now have In­dia’s first off­shore de­com­mis­sion­ing of Tapti fields and we will be­gin that work. We have al­ready been do­ing the first cou­ple of plug­ging wells and other works. We have al­ready trans­ferred some of the as­sets over to ONGC, but now we will be­gin the real de­com­mis­sion­ing works.”

The com­pany has spent a lot of time to bring in the best global stan­dards as it has ex­pe­ri­ence in ex­e­cut­ing de­com­mis­sion­ing in the North Sea, Mex­ico and other parts of the world. The com­pany has worked with its part­ners and the gov­ern­ment to iden­tify a way and ap­proach to do this with the best stan­dards.

The PMT joint ven­ture, com­pris­ing Oil and Nat­u­ral Gas Cor­po­ra­tion Lim­ited, Re­liance In­dus­tries Lim­ited and BG Ex­plo­ration and Pro­duc­tion In­dia Lim­ited — which is part of Shell now — is lo­cated off the shore to the south of the Gulf of Khamb­hat on the Ara­bian Sea coast of In­dia. It is un­der a pro­duc­tion-shar­ing con­tract (PSC) with the Min­istry of Petroleum and Nat­u­ral Gas, gov­ern­ment of In­dia.

The Tapti fields went into a phase of de­cline af­ter 2008 and ces­sa­tion of pro­duc­tion was fi­nally de­clared in March 2016, ac­cord­ing to a re­port by the Min­istry of En­vi­ron­ment, For­est and Cli­mate Change.

In 2017, the com­pany started pre­par­ing to de­com­mis­sion the Tapti fields. A total of 38 wells, five plat­forms and four pipe­lines have to be closed in or­der to de­com­mis­sion the fa­cil­ity.

Panna and Mukta fields pro­duce seven per cent of In­dia’s oil and gas pro­duc­tion. The fields are at a lat­ter phase of their life cy­cle and could be bet­ter run by a new op­er­a­tor, Prasad sug­gested.

“The type of tech­nolo­gies and ways in which you choose to run the field change in its life­time. There are bet­ter peo­ple to run the late phase of the fields than us. That is why we came back and made a de­ci­sion against ex­tend­ing the PSC,” he added. Once the PSC ends the un­in­cor­po­rated joint ven­ture will end and the as­sets will be handed over to the next op­er­a­tor.

The com­pany had last year an­nounced plans to open more than 1,000 out­lets in In­dia in 10 years. Its count is around 150 out­lets now. The com­pany is in talks with var­i­ous state gov­ern­ments to set up out­lets faster.

Com­ment­ing on the newly launched The Ox, Prasad said it is an en­ergy-ef­fi­cient af­ford­able so­lu­tion for last­mile con­nec­tiv­ity in In­dia. The ve­hi­cle will have a high level of lo­calised parts, which would make it eas­ier for man­u­fac­tur­ing, main­te­nance and re­pair. The com­pany is in talks with orig­i­nal equip­ment man­u­fac­tur­ers for var­i­ous mod­els of part­ner­ship to bring the ve­hi­cle com­mer­cially. The aim is also to use the all-ter­rain ve­hi­cle in ac­cess­ing dis­tant places dur­ing nat­u­ral dis­as­ters.

The Ox truck is a a global part­ner­ship be­tween Shell and Gor­don Mur­ray De­sign and the Global Ve­hi­cle Trust. The prod­uct launched in In­dia was the its fourth gen­er­a­tion ver­sion, in which Shell has in­vested. Prasad re­fused to share in­vest­ment fig­ures.

The 3.5-tonne truck can carry a weight of two tonne, which could be ben­e­fi­cial in ru­ral ar­eas, he said.

The Tapti fields went into a phase of de­cline af­ter 2008 and ces­sa­tion of pro­duc­tion was fi­nally de­clared in March 2016

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