According to the National Circular on Exploration and Exploitation of Oil and Gas Resources (2019) (hereinafter referred to as the Circular) released by the Ministry of Natural Resources recently, the investment in oil and gas exploration and exploitation in China increased substantially last year, and the exploration investment reached the highest level in history. The oil and gas exploration found a good momentum, and many important breakthroughs were made in prospecting. The proven oil and gas reserves increased significantly, adding 2 billion tons of oil fields, 3 billion square gas fields and 3 billion square shale gas fields; Oil and gas exploitation continues to show the trend of "stable oil and increasing gas", with steady increase in crude oil production and rapid growth in natural gas production; The reform of oil and gas resources management has been steadily advanced, and important progress has been made in oil and gas geological survey.
According to the Circular, in 2019, the national investment in oil and gas exploration and exploitation was 82.129 billion yuan and 252.71 billion yuan respectively, up by 29% and 24.4% respectively over the previous year, and the exploration investment reached the highest level in history.
In 2019, the proven geological reserves of oil increased by 1.124 billion tons, an increase of 17.2% over the previous year. Among them, there are three new basins with proven geological reserves greater than 100 million tons, namely Ordos Basin, Junggar Basin and Bohai Bay Basin; There are two new oilfields with proven geological reserves over 100 million tons, namely Qingcheng Oilfield in Ordos Basin and Mahu Oilfield in Junggar Basin. The newly-increased proven geological reserves of natural gas are 809.092 billion cubic meters, down 2.7% from the previous year. Among them, there are two new basins with proven geological reserves of more than 100 billion cubic meters, namely Ordos Basin and Sichuan Basin; There are three new gas fields with proven geological reserves of more than 100 billion cubic meters, namely Jingbian Gas Field and Sulige Gas Field in Ordos Basin, and Anyue Gas Field in Sichuan Basin. The newly-increased proven geological reserves of shale gas are 764.424 billion cubic meters, an increase of 513.1% over the previous year. The newly-increased reserves come from Changning shale gas field, Weiyuan shale gas field and Taiyang shale gas field of PetroChina in Sichuan Basin and Yongchuan shale gas field of Sinopec in Sichuan Basin. The newly-increased proven geological reserves of coalbed methane are 6.408 billion cubic meters, down 56.4% from the previous year, and the newly-increased proven reserves come from Wenjiaba coalbed methane block of Guizhou Water Mine.
The Circular also shows that the oil output has stopped falling and stabilized, the output of natural gas and coalbed methane has increased steadily, and the output of shale gas has increased rapidly. In 2019, the national oil output was 191 million tons, an increase of 1.1% over the previous year; The national natural gas output was 150.884 billion cubic meters, exceeding 100 billion cubic meters for 9 consecutive years, an increase of 6.6% over the previous year; The national shale gas output was 15.384 billion cubic meters, an increase of 41.4% over the previous year; The output of coalbed methane developed on the ground was 5.463 billion cubic meters, up 6.1% over the previous year.
By the end of 2019, there were 1,040 proven oil and gas fields in China, including 756 oil fields, 284 natural gas fields, 7 shale gas fields, 25 coalbed methane fields and 3 carbon dioxide gas fields; It has accumulated 7.126 billion tons of oil, 2.23 trillion cubic meters of natural gas, 49.201 billion cubic meters of shale gas and 24.478 billion cubic meters of coalbed methane.
According to the "Circular", in order to implement the spirit of the CPC Central Committee and the State Council on deepening the reform of the oil and gas system and vigorously improving the exploration and development of oil and gas, in 2019, the "Opinions of the Ministry of Natural Resources on Promoting the Reform of Mineral Resources Management (Trial)" was issued to open up oil and gas. Exploring and mining the market, introducing social funds through multiple channels to carry out oil and gas exploration and development; Implement stricter block exit and urge enterprises to increase exploration and development efforts; Implement the integration system of oil and gas exploration and production, and ensure that enterprises directly enter oil and gas exploitation after exploration and discovery from the institutional level; Adjust the exploration right once in two years to once in five years to reduce the cost of doing business for enterprises; The registration authority of coal-bed methane mining right transfer will be delegated to the provincial natural resources department to mobilize local enthusiasm. We will continue to promote the pilot projects in Xinjiang, the construction of shale gas pilot zones in northern Guizhou and southern Sichuan, the establishment of a comprehensive demonstration zone for shale gas exploration and development in western Hubei, the reform of oil and gas exploration and exploitation in the South China Sea and the comprehensive reform of energy revolution in Shanxi.