Unocal says Thailand natural gas projects remain on schedule
El Segundo, Calif., Nov. 17, 1997 -- Unocal Corporation today said that development of the company's natural gas projects in Thailand are continuing on schedule. Development work and current production forecasts for the company's Unocal Thailand, Ltd., subsidiary are not affected by recently announced delays in sales agreements between the Petroleum Authority of Thailand (PTT) and other gas suppliers in the Gulf of Thailand and elsewhere.
"We have firm sales contracts in place, and we are continuing to supply natural gas at or above those contract levels," said Roger C. Beach, Unocal chairman and chief executive officer. "We are able to deliver all of our current and planned production through the existing pipelines facilities."
Beach said that PTT continues to nominate natural gas deliveries at high rates despite the current economic slowdown in Thailand. "We believe strong natural gas usage can be one of the cornerstones of economic recovery in the Kingdom," he said.
Unocal estimates that gross gas production from its operations in the Gulf of Thailand should average nearly 1 billion cubic feet per day this year despite the economic downturn in the country. Unocal expects similar production levels in 1998.
"We applaud the broad efforts by the new prime minister in Thailand to hasten economic recovery of the nation," Beach said. "Our continued strong natural gas production will support those efforts by providing the country with domestic energy at lower cost than other fuel alternatives and by reducing Thailand's need for imported energy supplies."
Beach noted that development of the first phase of the Pailin field continues on schedule. The field is expected to begin gas production at the end of 1998 at 165 million cubic feet per day.
"We also hope to sign shortly new agreements that will expand our exploration and development activities in the Gulf of Thailand," Beach said. Agreements covering blocks 10A and 11A and block B10/32A are awaiting final approval by the new government.
Beach added that development of the Yadana gas project in Myanmar is also continuing on schedule. The project, which will sell gas to Thailand for use in an electrical generating plant, is expected to begin production in July 1998, ramping up to 525 million cubic feet per day (gross). The sales agreement is a take or pay contract. Unocal holds a 28.26 working interest in the Yadana project.
Unocal is a leading global energy resource and project development company, with year-end 1996 petroleum reserves of more than 9.8 trillion cubic feet of natural gas equivalent (1.6 billion barrels of oil equivalent) and major oil and gas production activities in Asia and the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. The company is also active in energy resource development in Asia and Latin America and is developing gas-marketing solutions for Turkmenistan. The company maintains twin headquarters in California and Malaysia, with major offices in Singapore, Jakarta, Bangkok and Sugar Land, Texas.
Forward-looking statements, including estimates of production and future operating activities, in this news release are based on assumptions concerning geology, drilling success, costs, discount rates, market conditions, competition, and other considerations. Actual results could differ materially.
Updated: November 1997