The Saudi Minister of Energy Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud has made an announcement that has the potential to greatly enhance the country’s energy reserves. According to the announcement, two previously undiscovered natural gas fields have been found in the Rub’ al Khali, which is commonly referred to as the Empty Quarter. Situated in the southern portion of the Arabian Peninsula, this expansive desert area is renowned for its challenging environment and extensive stretches of sandy dunes.
The significant discovery made by Aramco, the Saudi national oil company, was reported earlier this week by the state-run Saudi News Agency (SPA). It includes two natural gas fields named Hadbat Al-Hajarah and Abraq Al-Tuloul, situated in the Al-Jouf and Northern Borders regions, respectively.
The confirmation of the Al-Hiran gas field came as gas began to flow at a rate of 30 million standard cubic feet per day, accompanied by a daily output of 1,600 barrels of condensate. Similarly, the Al-Mahakik gas field was verified after gas was observed flowing at a rate of 0.85 million standard cubic feet per day, according to the agency’s report.
The discovery of these natural gas fields aligns with Saudi Arabia’s strategic objectives to diversify its energy sources and decrease its dependence on crude oil. The country has been actively pursuing the expansion of its gas production to meet the increasing demand for gas. The development of these newly found fields has the potential to make a substantial contribution towards achieving this goal.
Harnessing underutilized resources
Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman has stated that the Abraq Al-Tuloul field is anticipated to hold “unconventional super light Arabian crude.” Additionally, the Hadbat Al-Hajarah field is estimated to have a daily flow rate of 16 million standard cubic feet of gas, accompanied by approximately 1,944 barrels of condensate. These discoveries underscore Saudi Arabia’s dedication to harnessing its underutilized resources in order to safeguard its energy future.
Gas production targets
Aramco has set a target to increase its gas production by 50 percent by 2030 compared to the levels of 2021.
In late September, Aramco announced its agreement to acquire a strategic minority stake in MidOcean Energy, a liquefied natural gas (LNG) company, for $500 million. This move is part of Aramco’s broader effort to expand its presence in the natural gas sector. The agreement also includes an option to further increase its stake in MidOcean Energy.
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