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Mon 21 Feb 2011 07:22 PM

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Saudi Khurais pumping around 1 mbpd-Aramco

Khurais project is the biggest and the largest ever single addition to global oil supplies in Saudi history

Saudi Khurais pumping around 1 mbpd-Aramco
BIGGEST PROJECT: Khurais plateau of production is a minimum of 30 years at the current rate (Getty Images)

Saudi Arabia's Khurais oilfield is pumping at around a million barrels per
day, state oil company Saudi Aramco said on Monday.

The Khurais project is the biggest in Saudi history and the largest ever
single addition to global oil supplies.

"The facilities are designed for 1.2 million (bpd) now but we can
produce up to 1.4 million because this field is considered to be virgin
field," Yousef al Furaidan, manager of the production department, told
reporters at the field.

"What we produce on a daily basis is different from one day to another
because we are responding to the demand and responding to inventory in the
downstream but today we are producing about 1 million (bpd), 1.050, yesterday
we were producing 700,000 so it depends," he said.

"We produced 1.2 million bpd from the first day then we responded to
demand might be reduced by 300,000-400,000 (bpd) depending on the demand,"
he added.

Khurais took the main share when the kingdom added more than 2 million bpd
to its output capacity in 2009. Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world
that has significant spare oil output capacity that can be brought into
production swiftly if needed.

Khurais' plateau of production is a minimum of 30 years of sustainable
output at the current rate.

"We intend to maximize the recovery of the field as always the case of
any Saudi Aramco field development," Furaidan said. "Employing
horizontal technologies in drilling wells reduced well numbers by 63 percent
from 618 to 230 to produce the same amount of crude."

The field holds 27 billion barrels of oil and was the largest of 3 oilfield
projects that boosted Saudi Arabia's output capacity to 12.5 million bpd. OPEC's
leading member pumped 8.33 million bpd in January, according to a Reuters

Khurais contains prized Arab Light crude easily suited to refining high
value transport fuels.

Aramco's giant Ghawar was producing at around 6 million bpd, Furaidan said.

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