September 9, 2021 03:10 PM NPT
Dailekh, Sept 9: A seismic survey conducted for the exploration of petroleum products in Dailekh district has proved that the district has gas and petrol underground. The survey was conducted as per an agreement between Nepal and China.
It was proved after the team of Chinese technological experts involved in the exploration mentioned it in a report it sent to the Department of Mines and Geology.
Geologist at the department, Dr Sudhir Rajaure informed Republica that after the Chinese team ascertained the presence of underground petroleum in the district, the petroleum exploration process has been moved forward. "Now, a final survey will be conducted to ascertain the amount of petroleum products and their exact locations," he said.
However, the Chinese government has not sent the team of experts and technologists citing the risk of the coronavirus. The expert team of China is waiting for the permission from the Natural Resource Ministry there. Rajaure further said, "Four places among the surveyed locations showed positive results. After the Chinese team arrives again, further exploration will speed up."
The department shared that the survey and exploration would continue as per the G2G agreement between Nepal and China. "If there were no COVID-19 disturbance, works for a detailed survey and drilling could finish. It is already delayed by one and a half years," he added.
The exploration was begun in Asoj 2076BS. According to the department, drilling was completed at Shreesthan, Paduka, Kotila, Dailekh bazaar and the areas around the Karnali Highway.
Various international companies had begun exploration a decade back at 10 various places of Dailekh district. After they did not yield results, the government scrapped the agreements and made a new agreement with China.
According to the records maintained by the Department of Mines and Geology, more than USD 7.2 million was spent on the exploration process back then.
For further exploration, there would be 4,500 meters deep drilling which would help ascertain the amount of gas.