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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        16  March 2011

New wells lift Indonesia's oil output

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Ten new oil and gas blocks are set to come on line and help boost the country's oil production, an official at the upstream oil and gas regulator said.

BPMigas spokesman Gde Pradnyana said 10 new oil blocks were expected to start producing this year, though he cautioned that they would need about two years to ramp up to maximum capacity.

He did not reveal output targets for the blocks, which contain estimated reserves of 24 million barrels of oil equivalent.

According to the regulator, the blocks include Madura, which is operated by Husky Oil of Canada and the China National Offshore Oil Corp.; an offshore project in the Sebuku Strait near South Kalimantan that is operated by Pearl Oil; the Gajah Baru, Iguana and Naga project at West Natuna, which are operated by Premier Oil Natuna; and the Gas Tranche 4 block in West Java, which is run by Pertamina Hulu Energi, a subsidiary of the state oil and gas company.

Also expected to come on line are the Wortel offshore block in Madura, operated by Australian firm Santos; the Peciko Phase 7B well in Mahakam on Kalimantan that is operated by Total E&P of France; Chevron Oil Pacific Indonesia's Hari 2 well in South Jambi; Premier Oil Natuna's field in Anoa; the Tiaka field operated by JOB P-Medco E&P Tomori Sulawesi; and the North West Belani 1 well operated by Sele Raya Merangin Dua.

BPMigas said the country's oil production reached 906,732 bpd as of March 9. Its expected oil production target is 970,000 bpd this year.

The regulator also said production from the country's 10,000 old wells is expected to add an extra 10,000 bpd in output. Though they only produce one or two barrels of oil per day, Pradnyana said, they only require delivery costs.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More

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