The exploration and drilling activities in the Empty Quarter in Saudi Arabia are ongoing despite the low number of oil and gas discoveries made and the exit of some competitors, said companies operating in the region.
China Petrochemical Corporation (Sinopec Group) is committed to the drilling in the Empty Quarter despite the delay of drilling activities, Kevin Tang, senior vice president of Service Saudi Arabia, said on the sideline of the Saudi Arabia International Oil and Gas Exhibition, which concluded last week in Dammam, Saudi Arabia.
Tang said that his company employs 55 drillers in Saudi Arabia, but he declined to give an operation start date in Saudi Arabia’s Empty Quarter desert region.
In early August, Reuters reported that the Sino Saudi Gas, a joint venture between Sinopec and Saudi Aramco, delayed its drilling because of the ongoing evaluation of the well.
Since 2004, several companies have been hunting for gas in the Empty Quarter but without luck. This situation led Italy's Eni and Spain's Repsol to abandon their drilling activities in the area in January.
Meanwhile, the South Rub Al-Khali, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Shell, is the only company to report finding substantial quantities of gas in the region so far, and the sulphur-rich gas there could prove too costly to be commercially viable. The company has recently published dates related to the appraisal plan of the Kidan area, where it drilled nine wells, adding that two of the wells drilled last year showed significant gas flow.