Wintershall Pulling out of Qatar Gas Exploration
BASF's oil and gas subsidiary Wintershall is pulling out of its gas exploration activities in Qatar. The company said it is returning Block 4 North near the North Field off the Qatari coast and closing its office in Doha.
The company, which made the "Al Radeef" gas discovery off the cost of Qatar in 2013, blamed the Qatari government for not granting it access to local infrastructure.
"During the development planning, it was always clear to us and our partners that an economic development of the discovery, including the processing of the gas, would only be possible if we have access to local infrastructure. This access was not granted. That is why we have decided to take this step", said Wintershall managing board member Martin Bachmann, who is responsible for exploration and production in Europe and the Middle East.
Wintershall said its other activities in the Middle East region are not affected by the withdrawal from Qatar. The company's current focus is on the United Arab Emirates but it is also closely following the developments in other countries in the region, Bachmann said.
"The challenges in the region are increasing with local energy consumption growing rapidly. In order to maintain production in the long term, fields must be exploited more efficiently and technically more complex fields need to be developed," the board member added.
Wintershall has said it wants to increasingly leverage its considerable experience in deploying the Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) technology in the Middle East.