Sri Lanka to call for bids to develop Mannar Basin natural gas find
ECONOMYNEXT – The Sri Lankan government will soon call for bids to develop an offshore natural gas deposit in the Mannar Basin with the aim of getting fuel for a power plant nearby, officials said.
Petroleum Resources Development Secretariat (PRDS) Director General Vajira Dassanayaka said they will first offer the M2 block where Cairn India found natural gas in two test wells.
Government officials are meeting this week to decide on the tender, he told a news conference.
The PRDS also has got investor interest in other blocks in the Mannar Basin, he said.
“Our aim is to develop the Dorado well in the M2 block to supply natural gas to generate electricity,” Dassanayaka said.
The well is 38km from the Norochcholai coal power plant on the northwest coast.
“We estimate the deposit has 350 billion cubic metres of natural gas,” Dassanayaka said. “It’s a small discovery but enough for domestic consumption, for a 300MW power plant for 20 years.”
The well could be in production by 2023 if everything goes according to plan, he said.
The PRDS was having talks with the power ministry and Ceylon Electricity Board state power utility on an agreement to buy the gas for power generation.
(COLOMBO, 22 Octber, 2018)