Bahrain is to consider a wide range of finance options to help support the extraction of its newly-discovered offshore shale reserves, according to Dawood Nassif, an advisor to the kingdom’s oil minister and cited by The National.
"We’re looking at all options, frankly, we might invite [international oil companies] or we might invest some. It’s premature, however. We need time,” Nassif told reporters in Abu Dhabi.
"In six months’ time we’d be in a better position,” he added.
Bahrain, recently announced that it had unearthed around 80 billion barrels of unconventional oil and up to 20 trillion cubic feet of tight gas off its west coast. The discovery could potentially transform the island state’s reserves which currently total well under 200 million barrels.
Nassif, who is also on the board of the country’s state-owned Bahrain Petroleum Company, re-iterated the field’s recovery rate would not be known “for a few months to come”.
Extraction of tight oil and gas is complex and recovery rates are notoriously low, with most experts suggesting that the usual yield is somewhere between 5-10%.
Bahrain is to work with US firm Halliburton to drill appraisal wells in the first instance. Currently, Bahrain is the smallest oil producer in the Arabian Gulf, generating around 50,000 barrels per day domestically, as well as holding a 50% share in the offshore Abu Safah field alongside Saudi Arabia.