India’s crude production falls 2% as both Mumbai High and Rajasthan miss targets

India’s crude oil production missed its target by a substantial 5.7% in September, due to 9.2% year-on-year dip in oil production from India’s biggest field, Mumbai High.

Against a targeted 3.25 million tonnes of crude oil, India could produce only 3.07 million tonnes in September.

Most of the slippage occurred in the Mumbai High field, operated by the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). Against a planned production of 1,168 million tonnes, actual production was 1,082 million tonnes. A year ago, the field — responsible for a third of India’s current output — had produced 1,192 million tonnes.

“Less than anticipated oil gain from development wells, side track, new & workover wells, less than anticipated oil gain from Vasai East and delay in project execution of G-I field,” were quoted as the reasons for the dip from Mumbai High.

Vedanta’s Rajasthan field, India’s second biggest field, had an output of 712 million tonnes. Though it missed its target by 1%, the number was still higher by nearly 36% compared to September last year.

In all, ONGC continued to produce about 59% of the total crude oil produced in India. The Rajasthan field increased its share in the total from about 16.9% a year ago to 23.2% this September.

ONGC’s overall crude production was down 5.9% year on year, at 1810 million tonnes.

India’s other big oil producer, Oil India Ltd, also missed its target by a wide margin, producing only 3.5 million tonnes against the target of 324 million tonnes. The number is 2.5% below last year’s number.

India’s offshore gas production too was lacklustre. Total production was just 38.3 million cubic metres per day (MMscmd), off target by more than 3%. It may be noted that Reliance’s KG D6 alone was expected to produce 80 MMscmd, before it was beset with problems.

“Oil/ Gas production is much less in D1,D3 & MA fields Vis-à-vis FDP approved rates. Total 6 wells in D1d,D3 & 2 wells in MA have ceased to flow due to water/sand ingress,” the government said.

In all, India’s total production accounted for only 22% of the14.1 million tonnes of total crude oil that was processed in the country’s refineries. The remaining came from imports. It may be noted that a large chunk of refined crude oil is again exported.