State energy firm PTT makes its largest-ever gas find

Partially privatized state energy conglomerate PTT has found its largest-ever field of natural gas in a project off Malaysia’s coast, providing a boost for Thailand’s energy reserves, which have been dwindling in recent years.

“We are delighted to confirm the largest-ever gas discovery by PTT Exploration and Production (PTTEP),” Chief Executive Officer Phongsthorn Thavisin said. The discovery also strengthens the company’s investment base in neighboring Malaysia. Thailand and Malaysia share the energy rights to some waters off their coasts.

PTT said it made the discovery at the Lang Lebah-2 about 56 miles off the coast of Sarawak, the Malaysian state on the island of Borneo, or Kalimantan, that it shares with Indonesia. PTT and Malaysian firms are partners in the area in a project named Sarawak SK 410B.

Appraisers said the field could produce a flow rate of 50 million cubic feet of gas per day after drilling over 4,000 yards beneath the seabed.

Natural gas provides the lion’s share of Thailand’s energy supplies. The Kingdom once had plentiful gas reserves in the Gulf of Thailand, but those are slowly sliding towards depletion.

Nonetheless, the Kingdom is not anywhere near close to an energy crisis. PTT has expanded globally and sources natural gas from a variety of locations. Just this month, PTTEP acquired a 20 percent stake in Oman’s Block 61 from British Petroleum for $2.6 billion.

In addition, Thailand and PTT have been moving into green and renewable energies. The Kingdom has a policy to provide 30 percent of its energy from green and renewable sources by 2036. Thailand is already the largest producer of solar and wind power in Southeast Asia.

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