President Rodrigo Duterte signed his first Petroleum Contract Service (PSC), allowing an Israeli firm to explore more than 400,000 hectares off the Palawan basin for oil and gas reserves.
According to Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, the joint partnership with Ratio Petroleum Ltd. will help the Philippines develop an indigenous source of oil and attain energy security and sustainability as soon as possible.
“The President has been very clear – our country needs to attain energy security and sustainability at the soonest possible time. We are currently experiencing how our dependence on importation has left us at the mercy of price movements in the global oil markets. We need to boost the exploration and development of our own energy resources and the awarding of the petroleum service contract to Ratio Petroleum is a step in the right direction,” he said.
The awarded PSC is part of the Fifth Philippine Energy Contracting Round (PECR5) which was established in 2013 as a transparent and competitive system of awarding service or operating contracts for prospective petroleum or coal areas in the country.
With the PSC, Ratio Petroleum will now be able to explore Area 4 which covers 416,000 hectares across the East Palawan Basin for possible oil and gas resources. Expected minimum total expenditure is at US $ 34,3500,000, which will be attained from studies, data gathering, and drilling activities in the initial seven-year contract duration.
“This is the first petroleum service contract signed under the Duterte administration. In fact, the last service contract awarded was with PXP Energy Corporation. This was almost five years ago in 2013,”Cusi said emphasized.
Ratio Petroleum has operations at the Levant Basin in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, as well as shore operations in the Republic of Malta and the Co-operative Republic of Guyana.