China has just announced a great discovery in the field of fossil matter research. It is the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) which claims to have discovered a field with reserves of crude oil and natural gas estimated at 100 million tons of oil. A deposit off the city of Tianjin in the middle of the Bohai Sea.
According to this state oil company, the well is drilled to a depth of 5,223 meters. The field’s exploration well would have encountered areas of oil and gas 346 meters thick.
The average daily production of oil and gas from the well is estimated to be 300 tonnes and 150,000 cubic meters, respectively, according to the company’s estimates.
The China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) announced Monday that it has discovered a field in the Bohai Sea with estimated reserves of crude oil and natural gas totaling 100 million tonnes of oil equivalent pic.twitter.com/kr7BGwDTu8
— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) February 23, 2021
“China is everywhere”
A discovery that may seem impressive but that Samuele Furfari, professor at the ULB in energy geopolitics at the Free University of Brussels, tends to relativize: “This is good news in the search for fossil fuels. However, it is still far too early to define exactly the reserves of this well. To be able to carry out this type of projection, it takes years of study followed by several years of drilling. Only then can production start“.
If for Samuele Furfari this type of announcement is relatively banal, what is interesting is that China continues to invest in research and production of fossil fuels. “Even if the Chinese are present in all fields and invest in all energy models, they are not abandoning fossil fuels and they continue to invest in the search for fossil fuels because they need it. China knows that its future depends on fossil fuels but once again, the Chinese are everywhere and are investing in all areas“.
Invest where others are not
Proof of these investments, the Chinese are settling in areas forgotten or abandoned by other oil companies. Perhaps the most striking example is the collaboration between China and Iran. Tehran being hit by international sanctions, China jumped at the opportunity to enjoy Iranian resources. Especially since it does not care about these sanctions, mainly American. But Chinese investments are not just made in Iran. The country also collaborates with Iraq and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
If the importance of the recently discovered deposit in China is confirmed, this should not however upset the importance of Beijing as an oil-producing country. “Currently, China only represents 1.5% of the world’s oil reserves. It will therefore not take Saudi Arabia’s place right away. The Middle East remains well above the rest“, concludes Samuele Furfari.
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