ISLAMABAD - A joint venture of four oil exploration companies has completed the offshore drilling process near Karachi coast on Indus G-Block (Kekra-1) after four months.

A consortium comprising of ExxonMobil, ENI, Oil and Gas Development Company, and Pakistan Petroleum Limited conducting the drill stem test to determine the real size of the oil and gas reserves in the Kekra-1 well, located around 280 kilometers away from Karachi, sources said.

The planned drilling of 5,470 metres was achieved at a cost of Rs14 billion.

The Drill Stem Test (DST) would be completed in the next three days. After the completion of the DST, a report will be prepared about the total quantity of the oil and gas reserves within a week, sources further said.

In initial estimates, the availability of around nine trillion cubic feet of gas with a large quantity of oil was assessed in the Kekra-1 well.

Due to the critical situations faced in the Kekra-1 well drilling, the exploration venture had to spend an additional $100 million in order to procure surplus steel and cement etc to drill the Kekra-1 well in another direction.

The actual quantity of the hydrocarbon reserves would be made during the next ten days, sources said. Necessary infrastructure in the sea would be deployed for oil and gas exploration if the price of total deposits quantity will be more than $10 billion, an official said. If the quantity of the reserves will be in line with the estimates, Pakistan’s import bill could be decreased by $6 billion annually, experts said.