Reliance and BP kick-start production from Indian deep-water gas field



Indian private-sector giant Reliance Industries and UK supermajor BP have kick-started gas production from the MJ deep-water gas field in the Krishna Godavari basin offshore India’s east coast.

The MJ field is the third key project being targeted by Reliance and BP in a $5 billion drive to boost gas production from India’s KG-D6 block, with the trio expected to account for about one-third of the country’s current domestic gas production and around 15% of its gas demand, according to Reliance.

The operator confirmed the production start-up on Friday and said the field has been brought on stream “following testing and commissioning activities”.

Reliance added that the MJ field “represents the last of three major new deep-water developments” that Reliance and BP have brought into production in Block KG-D6, following the R-Cluster in December 2020 and the Satellite Cluster in April 2021.

Ruby FPSO

The MJ development includes a new floating production, storage and offloading vessel, the Ruby FPSO, to process and separate the condensate, gas, water, and impurities, before sending the gas onshore for sale.

Reliance and BP had previously hoped to commission the MJ field by the end of last year, but were forced to delay due to bad weather and because the Ruby FPSO was involved in a collision with an accommodation barge, causing minor damage to the floater.

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The operator confirmed the incident at the time and added that no personnel were injured and there was no impact on the overall project schedule and commissioning for the field development.

The double-hulled Ruby FPSO was built at South Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries yard and has an oil production capacity of 60,000 barrels per day of liquids and about 12.7 MMcmd of gas, Upstream understands.

It is expected to have a condensate production capacity of 30,000 bpd and a water-handling capacity of at least 20,000 bpd, with the potential for the latter to be increased.

Reliance chairman Mukesh Ambani said his company’s partnership with BP combines “expertise in commissioning complex projects under some of the most challenging environments in the last few years”.

He added that, alongside the other KG D6 fields, the MJ development “truly supports” the Indian government’s ‘Make in India’ and ‘Energy vision’.

BP chief executive Bernard Looney the MJ development is expected to make a key contribution to meeting India’s demand for secure supplies of gas.

Reliance holds a 66.67% operating interest in KG-D6, with BP holding the remaining 33.33%.