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Oil giant's new platform achieves key milestone

By ZHENG XIN | China Daily | Updated: 2021-05-20 09:44
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A CNOOC employee uses a wireless communication device on an offshore drilling platform in the South China Sea. [Photo by Wang Yuguo/For China Daily]

The country's largest independently designed and constructed offshore crude oil production platform-Lufeng 14-4 central platform-has completed float-over installation on Thursday in the South China Sea, which will further enhance the country's large-scale offshore oil and gas equipment construction and installation capabilities, China National Offshore Oil Corp said on Wednesday.

Expected to be put into operation later this year, the platform will provide more natural gas and oil resources for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, said Gao Shuang, general director of the company's Lufeng oil complex project.

The platform, after beginning operations, will explore the Lufeng 14-4 and Lufeng 14-8 oilfields. This is also the country's first attempt to develop deep and low permeability oilfields in the South China Sea, said CNOOC, one of the country's three major oil and gas companies.

The platform, located in Lufeng Sag near the mouth of the Pearl River in the South China Sea, has an average water depth of 145 meters, weighs around 30,000 metric tons, and is 218 meters high, the company said.

The installation of Lufeng 14-4 enables CNOOC to conduct further offshore oil and gas exploration and production, said Li Ziyue, an analyst with Bloomberg NEF.

CNOOC has played an increasingly important role in ensuring China's energy security. In 2020, the company was responsible for 80 percent of additional crude oil output and 14 percent of additional gas output compared to 2019, she said.

CNOOC, the country's offshore expert, has been enhancing oil and gas exploration in recent years to enhance its oil and gas supply capacity and ensure domestic energy security.

The country's offshore oil and gas production has exceeded 65 million tons in 2020 for the first time, with crude oil seeing a year-on-year production growth of 2.4 million tons, more than 80 percent of the country's total increase.

The company vows to further step up its new capacity construction during the 14th Five-Year-Plan period (2021-25) and continuously increase oil and gas reserves and production. The Lufeng oilfield complex, after put into operation, will be a major force pushing forward the country's crude oil production growth, it said.

CNOOC said offshore oil and gas production has become a major pillar of the country's energy growth. The company carried out major oil and gas exploration during the 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-20), with oil and gas exploration now reaching 1.3 billion tons and proven natural gas reserves reaching 500 billion cubic meters.

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