No oil in Penang waters, says exco

Chow-Kon-Yeow-penangGEORGE TOWN: There is no oil in Penang waters, an exco man told the state assembly today, following a DAP rep’s suggestion to halt reclamation and rely on possible oil reserves in the state’s waters for revenue.

Chow Kon Yeow (DAP-Padang Kota) said based on data from a petroleum industry study, there was no oil discovered in the waters of Penang.

Pointing out to an “Oil & Gas Map – Malaysia”, released during a petroleum industry convention in Kuala Lumpur in 2009, he said most of the oil was discovered on the east coast of Malaysia.

“Based on the National Oil and Gas Industries Body 2009 report published by the Malaysian Oil and Gas Services Council, there is no oil in Penang waters,” Chow said in winding up his debate of thanks to the governor’s address today.

On Tuesday, Teh Yee Cheu (DAP-Tanjung Bungah) proposed that reclamation efforts around Penang Island be put on hold, as there might be oil reserves in the state’s waters.oilgas

Teh had said it was worth researching Penang’s waters for any oil find as northern Sumatra had been found to have vast oil reserves over the past few years.

Penang is planning to reclaim three islands south of Penang Island to fund its RM47 billion transport master plan, which includes transit lines, roads, highways and other modes of transport.

Teh was referring to a report about an Indonesian research agency having found potential areas with oil off the west coast of Banda Aceh.

Indonesia’s State Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) claimed some 107-320 billion barrels-equivalent of hydrocarbon reserves were found near the Simeulue Island.

This was reported by Upstream, a global oil and gas news website in 2008.oilgas1

The estimates beat net oil exporter Saudi Arabia, which had proven reserves of 264.21 billion barrels.

However, Aceh’s new oil find remains at an exploratory stage.

BPPT found the hydrocarbon resources during a 2-D survey of subsea geological changes caused by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.

The study was conducted together with Germany’s Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources.

However, there have been no further news of the oil reserves.