Prospect of oil in Haripur well-9

There are chances of finding oil reserves in the ninth well of Haripur Gas Field in Sylhet district.

An official of state-owned Sylhet Gas Fields Limited (SGFL), a company of Bangladesh Oil, Gas and Mineral Corporation or Petrobangla, made the disclosure.

Geologists are not ruling out this possibility, and according to their opinion, the location of oil has been proved in some layers in the Haripur and Kailastila gas fields. 

Oil was found there earlier. So oil can be found in Haripur No. 9 well.

The ninth well of the natural gas field-- which is under the supervision of Petrobangla-- is being drilled by Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration & Production Company Limited (BAPEX). However, the location and depth, etc. of the well No. 9 have been determined on the basis of the three-dimensional seismic survey conducted by Bapex.

When contacted, Md. Shahjahan Ali, Manager & In-Charge of Haripur Gas Field told Bangladesh Post, “The depth of the well is around 2100 meters. The drilling work that started on October 2, is expected to be completed by December. We hope to find oil in this well based on the results of the seismic survey. However, we have to wait until completion of the drilling work to get accurate results .”

According to Bapex and SGFL sources, oil and gas (hydrocarbons) have been identified at five layers up to a depth of 2,100 meters in the Haripur field. Of these, the geological structure between 400 to 600 and 1000 to 1200 meters depth is complex. Around 700 meters of the well has already been drilled.

In this context Badrul Imam, a professor of geology at Dhaka University said that Sylhet (Haripur gas field is known as Sylhet gas field) and some of the surrounding Kailashtila gas fields have oil levels. Oil has been found there earlier. According to geological conditions and past experience, there is a possibility of getting oil from the ninth well.

Haripur is the first and only oil field in the country. Before the emergence of Bangladesh, six wells were drilled in Haripur. After independence, well No. 7 of Haripur gas field was drilled in 1978, and oil was found there on December 23 of that year. After extracting a total of 560,869 barrels of oil in about 7 years, on July 14, 1994, when the oil pressure (wellhead pressure) in the well dropped to almost zero, the flow of oil stopped.

According to experts, underground oil contains a waxy substance (wax). During oil extraction, the wax accumulates on the pipes of the well so the flow of oil is disrupted. So the wax has to be cleaned regularly to keep the oil flowing in the well. It was not done in Haripur well no. 7. That is why the wellhead pressure decreased and the flow of oil stopped.

Well no. 8 in the field was drilled in 1989. There was a possibility of getting oil in that well too. But gas is available there. Bapex then conducted a three-dimensional seismic survey in the area. The drilling work is now being done at well-9 on its basis.

In addition, SGFL is the pioneer in the discovery and production of natural gas and mineral oil in the country. Though this Company was incorporated on 8th May, 1982, its history of production and sale of natural gas dates back to 1960 under the umbrella of its predecessor, erstwhile Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL), which discovered gas at Sylhet Well No. 1 at Haripur in Sylhet District in the year 1955. It was the first discovered hydrocarbon gas field in the Country.

In 1960, commercial production of gas commenced for the first time in the country by supplying about 4 million cubic feet of gas per day to Chhatak Cement Factory which heralded a new era in respect of production and use of natural gas in this region. It was a landmark in the use of natural gas as an industrial prime-mover.

In 1961, transmission of gas from Sylhet Well No. 3 commenced to Fenchuganj Fertilizer Factory through a 30 mile long 8 inch dia pipe line at the rate of 20 million cubic feet per day. This was a turning point in industrial development since natural gas was used as raw material in industry. In fact, it was the beginning of an era which paved the way for a promising future.

On 23rd December 1986, the long cherished dream of the country came true with the first oil find in Well No. 7 at Sylhet (Haripur) Field. The discovery gave a new impetus and opened a new horizon of hope for exploration of mineral oil in the country.

At present, the company has, under its umbrella, 5 gas fields namely Sylhet (Haripur), Kailashtilla, Rashidpur, Beanibazar and Chhatak with 11 producing gas wells. A condensate fractionation plant at Rashidpur has been installed and started production from 01 August, 2009.

Fractionation plants having capacity of 3750 barrels per day are installed at Rashidpur to produce motor spirit, octane, diesel and kerosene.