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ExxonMobil buys into Pakistan’s offshore drilling

Energy company ExxonMobil, which also makes extreme pressure gear oils like Mobilgear 600 XP 68, has acquired a 25% stake in offshore drilling in Pakistan. Prior to the acquisition, Italian energy firm Eni, Oil and Gas Development Company (commonly known as OGDCL), and state-owned Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) all held equal third shares.

On Monday May 28, an agreement was signed at

the Prime Minister’s Secretariat between Government Holdings Private Limited, ExxonMobil, Eni, PPL, and OGDCL. The four partnering companies will now each hold quarter shares in drilling operations.

ExxonMobil brings a wealth of experience in offshore drilling and hydrocarbons production. The company has been recently looking to build up its long-term development portfolio to ensure it can maintain production as older fields are retired.

Pakistan certainly seems to have potential. An assessment from the US Agency for International Development put the country’s shale gas resources at 10,159 trillion cubic feet and shale oil at 2.3 trillion barrels. The US IEA’s estimates, however, are somewhat less optimistic. In its June 2013 estimates, it put shale gas resources at 586 trillion cubic feet and shale oil resources at 227 billion barrels. Of these, it believed 105 trillion cubic feet and 9.1 billion barrels were technically recoverable.

There are clear challenges ahead, but ExxonMobil’s experience with both offshore and shale drilling will no doubt be invaluable in developing Pakistan’s hydrocarbon resources. Before beginning drilling operations, a study will first be carried out, with each of the four companies being assigned different areas.

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