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China to focus on developing role in unconventionals, oilfield services


HOUSTON -- On the second day of the 2013 Offshore Technology Conference, panelists in a technical session devoted to discussing China' s position in the global oil and gas industry touched on the nation' s role as both a hydrocarbons producer and growing oilfield services provider.

President of PetroChina' s foreign cooperation department (CCAD) Yan Cunzhang said although China' s hydrocarbon resources are promising, they pose unique challenges for operators, both foreign and domestic. To be able to effectively and efficiently explore and produce hydrocarbons in China, especially in shale formations, requires patience and skill, Cunzhang said.

When compared to the U.S., he said, China has a much denser population and currently lacks the land and water resources necessary to fully duplicate North America' s shale E&P success. Cunzhang also noted that production sharing contracts have been signed for 2013 by both ConocoPhillips and Eni in China' s Sichuan basin.

In China, as much as 75% of the recoverable oil and gas resources are considered unconventional. Cunzhang said these resources will be the nation' s future focus, and that shale gas and tight oil will likely continue to be the main targets for foreign operators.

Looking outside of China, Sinopec Oilfield Service Corporation' s Executive VP Zhang Yongjie spoke about service integration as a part of the larger strategic transformation in oil and gas worldwide. Yongjie encouraged industry players to get to know Sinopec' s oilfield services branch, which has been increasing its global activity level in recent years.

Yongjie said his group has already engaged in oilfield service contracts with Pemex and Saudi Aramco, and has worked on projects in Algeria and Nigeria, too. Introducing the group to a larger audience is a central focus, he said. Sinopec Oilfield Service Corporation engages in integrated service activity in areas including: geophysics, drilling, industrial, offshore and infrastructure.

Other speakers from the "Active Arena—China: Energy, Technology and Industry" session represented global engineering, marine and shipbuilding companies located in or active throughout China. The panel was moderated by Joseph M. Reilly, senior consultant with ExxonMobil and member of the IPTC board of directors, and Doreen Chin, surface engineering discipline advisor at Shell.

The conference continues through Thursday, and will feature additional panel discussions on: opportunities in megaprojects, stakeholder interest integration, value creation through global technology and offshore heavy lifting operations.


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