PTTEP, Omani firm ink exploration deal

PTTEP, Omani firm ink exploration deal

Somporn Vongvuthipornchai (left) and Isam Bin Saud Al Zadjali at the MoU signing.
Somporn Vongvuthipornchai (left) and Isam Bin Saud Al Zadjali at the MoU signing.

SET-listed PTT Exploration and Production Plc (PTTEP) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production (OOCEP), seeking ways to share expertise and information in relevant areas of mutual interest, according to company executives.

The move is expected to be the first step as the two companies create a partnership for further exploration in Oman and other countries.

Somporn Vongvuthipornchai, president and chief executive of PTTEP, said the MoU was signed on Sunday and is part of PTTEP's plan to expand its production capacity to 600,000 barrels a day by 2025, up from 322,000 now.

"We are delighted that OOCEP and PTTEP, the two national oil companies, have signed this MoU," Mr Somporn said. "PTTEP has been operating in Oman for over 10 years, and it is PTTEP's intention to explore further business cooperation and opportunities for mutual benefit of the two parties, both in Oman and Thailand."

OOCEP is a subsidiary of Oman Oil Company (OOC). The agreement was signed by Isam Bin Saud Al Zadjali, chief executive of OOC, and Mr Somporn of PTTEP.

"By way of this MoU, OOCEP and PTTEP will explore potential cooperation opportunities between the two parties to achieve synergy in the oil and gas upstream sector," Mr Al Zadjali said. "Both parties will discuss areas of mutual interest to identify business initiatives and investment areas."

Apart from seeking wider cooperation with foreign partners in the exploration business, PTTEP is also continuing it cost-cutting plan in order to survive at a time when global oil prices remain low.

The company cut its unit production costs in the first quarter this year to US$28.57 a barrel from $40 year-on-year and from $35.18 in the previous quarter.

Cash cost, a cash-basis accounting cost recognition process that classifies costs as they are paid for in cash, was also cut to $17.27 in the first quarter, down from $23.13 year-on-year.

PTTEP shares closed yesterday on the Stock Exchange of Thailand at 81.75 baht, down 25 satang, in trade worth 810 million baht.

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