Cambodian premier Hun Sen on Tuesday announced that the first drop of crude oil has been extracted in the Kingdom’s waters, by Singapore’s KrisEnergy.
The company expects a peak production rate of 7,500 barrels a day once the drilling programme is completed in February 2021 — a modest amount compared with Cambodia’s oil-producing neighbours Vietnam and Thailand. The government estimates that hundreds of millions of barrels of crude were beneath its waters.
Chevron in 2005 discovered proven oil reserves Cambodia. However, Chevron sold its stake to Singapore’s KrisEnergy in 2014 as it failed to reach a revenue-sharing agreement with the Cambodian government.
Announcing the extraction from an area off the southwestern coast of Sihanoukville, Hun Sen hailed it as “a new achievement for Cambodia’s economy”.
“The first drop of oil has been produced.”
“The year 2021 is coming… and we have received a huge gift for our nation — the first oil production in our territory,” according to AFP news.
Cambodian government in 2017 estimated that it would make at least $500 million in royalties and taxes from the first phase of the project.
Kelvin Tang, the CEO of KrisEnergy’s Cambodia operations, said there has been a “steep learning curve” to launch the field production during a global pandemic.
“The cross-border logistics of mobilising personnel and equipment to execute this development safely during this time of Covid-19 would not have been possible without [government support],” he said.
By: Ifunanya Ikueze