Three Offshore Gas Fields to Shut Down for Maintenance in April 2015

Source: Myanmar Times 3/10/2015, Location: Asia

Three of the country’s four offshore gas fields are to be shut down in April “for annual maintenance”, according to a senior official with Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise.

The Yadana, Yetagun and Zawtika gas fields are to be halted for about a week each at the end of April, said the official, who is an offshore director but declined to be named.

“We have negotiated with PTT [the gas buyer] for gas exports, and with the Ministry of Electric Power for domestic supply, to arrange a shutdown of the gas fields for maintenance,” he said.

“It will start in April around the time of the water festival.”

Thailand relies heavily on natural gas for 70 percent of its electricity generation, with about one-fifth of its supply coming from Myanmar, according to Reuters.

Yadana and Yetagun will be shut down for maintenance from April 10 to 19 and Zawtika from April 20 to 27, according to Reuters news agency, which quoted a statement from Thailand’s state-owned PTT.

The Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise official said the shutdown must be done to maintain gas production platforms. “We tried to set different dates for maintenance on Yadana, Yetagun and Zawtika to avoid gas shortages,” he said. “Within the maintenance days, no gas will be produced.”

Current gas production of Yadana is about 830 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd), while Yetagun is producing 350 mmcfd and the new Zawtika site produces 80 to 90 mmcfd.

French firm Total E&P Myanmar is the operator of Yadana, where commercial gas production started in 1998. Yetagun began in 2000, operated by Petronas Carigali Myanmar. PTTEP is the operator of Zawtika, which began production last year.

The three fields together export about 1.3 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas to Thailand and supply around 280 mmcfd for domestic use.

Natural gas has declined in price over the last six months as crude oil dropped significantly. Some international petroleum firms in foreign markets have discussed slowing investments and production in reaction to the dropping prices.

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