National Policy on Natural Gas initial draft ready


The Petroleum Resources Development Secretariat (PRDS) has prepared an initial draft of the ‘National Policy on Natural Gas’ as the Government moves to commercialize already discovered gas deposits in the Mannar basin through International Competitive Bidding.

This was indicated in the Petroleum Resources Development Ministry Performance Report for the year 2017 tabled in Parliament on July 19.“Sri Lanka has already discovered its own gas depositories in the Mannar basin. It has been revealed that the smaller “Dorado” reservoir has 300 Billion Cubic Feet of Natural Gas that can fire a 630 MW power plant for about 10 years.

The more complex larger “Barracuda” discovery exceeds 1.8 Trillion Cubic Feet of Natural Gas that can fire a 2,000 MW power plant for 30 years,” the report stated. It stated the Draft National Policy on Natural Gas prepared by the PRDS in collaboration with the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation is currently being reviewed by the Ministry together with other stakeholders.

“Once it is finished, stakeholder consultation workshops will be organised for further development of the said draft policy. There is potential for Natural Gas to be used in power, industrial, transportation, household and commerce sectors in Sri Lanka as a fuel or a feedstock,” the report observed. In addition, oil and gas exploration activities are being carried out through foreign investors on multi-client basis.

The PRDS is also in the process of drafting new petroleum regulations and amending the Petroleum Resources Act following the Mannar basin natural gas discoveries. “Such reforms have been initiated to accomplish the primary task of establishing a robust regulatory framework, designed to govern and protect the fiscal and environmental interests of the associated parties while ensuring the continuous maintenance of efficiency and transparency of petroleum operations being carried out,” the report added.

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