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KOC’s $3.3 billion oil exploration project aims at northern oil fields

Kuwait Oil Company is preparing to tender a $3.3 billion oil exploration project focused on boosting exploration activities in the north of the country.

• The project will be divided into nine separate packages and will include the purchase of drilling rigs. The new drilling rigs will have maximum power capacities ranging from 750 to 2,000 horsepower. This project is also part of a larger plan to increase Kuwait’s oil production to 4 million barrels per day by 2035.

Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) is set for a significant undertaking – a $3.3 billion oil exploration project focused on boosting activities in the north of the country.

According to reports by Al-Qabas newspaper, this project is said to align with Kuwait’s larger plan to significantly increase its oil production capacity.

Project details

The project will be divided into nine separate packages, and a substantial portion will involve the acquisition of drilling rigs.

These rigs will range in maximum power capacity from 750 to 2,000 horsepower and will be instrumental in KOC’s exploration and development efforts. Companies interested in the project will be expected to provide both manpower and equipment.

This initiative is part of a broader strategy to raise Kuwait’s oil production to a staggering 4 million barrels per day by 2035. The nation’s current production sits around 2.9 million barrels per day, with an interim goal of reaching 3.2 million barrels per day by 2025 or 2026.

This exploration and development project is expected to be a stepping stone within a larger project plan to be unveiled in the coming months. The comprehensive plan will encompass various upstream and downstream projects, alongside petrochemical facilities.

North Al-Zour IWPP project update

While the oil exploration project progresses, the Ministry of Electricity, Water and Renewable Energy is providing an update on the North Al-Zour IWPP project.

Through the Public-Private Partnership Projects Authority (PPP), qualified bidders have been granted a three-month extension to submit their bids for the contract to develop and operate the country’s next independent water and power producer (IWPP).

Previously scheduled for a June 30th deadline, bids for the development and operation contract for the North Al-Zour 2 and 3 IWPPs are now expected on September 30th.

These combined phases will boast a power generation capacity of 2,700 megawatts and a desalination capacity of 120 million imperial gallons per day.

Located roughly 100 kilometers south of Kuwait City, the project will neighbor the existing North Al-Zour 1 power and desalination plant to the west and the Al-Zour South power station area to the north.

The PPP Procurement Authority received qualification data from potential developers last year. However, there has been a shift in plans.

Initially intended as bundled projects, the North Al-Zour 2 and 3 and Khairan 1 projects will now be procured as separate independent power and water contracts.

A source familiar with the project indicates that the development and operation contract for the Khairan 1 IWPP, boasting a power generation capacity of 1,800 megawatts and a desalination capacity of 33 million gallons per day, will be tendered later in 2024.

Situated near the southern boundary of the Al-Zour South power and water complex, this project, like North Al-Zour 2 and 3, will utilize a mix of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and high-pressure natural gas (HPG) as its primary fuel source, with gas oil as a backup option.

Upon commissioning, both plants are anticipated to operate for 25 years, exporting their production to the electricity grid and water transmission network through a power transmission and water purchase agreement (PPA) established with the Ministry of Electricity and Water.






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