The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for a significant project to acquire 48,243 Line Kilometer (LKM) 2D seismic data for appraisal of Indian sedimentary basins where limited data is available. The project will help in increasing the investments in domestic production of oil and gas. The project will be implemented by NOCs, i.e. Oil India Limited (OIL) and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). OIL will conduct survey in North – Eastern States while remaining area will be covered by ONGC. Survey work will be carried out in 24 States. Total estimated cost of the entire project is Rs. 2932.99 crore spread over five years. Initially National Oil Companies (NOCs) are meeting the fund requirement from their own sources, which will be reimbursed by the Government. Entire project is likely to be completed by 2019-20. Directorate General of Hydrocarbons is monitoring the project and reviewing the progress on monthly basis.
Project involves engagement of large number of workers at local level where work is to be executed. This is likely to generate direct as well as indirect employment for about 11,000 people in the form of skilled and unskilled workers and suppliers for support services. After the appraisal of these basins, and based on the prospectivity of the area, blocks will be offered for further exploration & production activities which will further generate employment.
India has 26 sedimentary basins covering an area of 3.14 Million Sq Km spread over onland, shallow water and deep water. An area of about 1.502 Million Sq. Km i.e. 48% of total sedimentary basin area does not have adequate geo-scientific data. As a base to launch future Exploration and Production (E&P) activities, appraisal of all unappraised areas has been considered an important task. The preparatory work started in 2015-16 and actual survey work started in 2016-17 and more than 9100 LKM 2D seismic data has been acquired till July, 2017. Data acquisition helps in giving the initial insight into the basins and helps in planning the future E&P activities. It will be useful in deciding the focus areas of the exploration activities in the country and on the basis of this primary data, E&P companies would take up further exploration activities in the acreages allocated to them.