On 15 January, Mohammed Hussein Monsur, Chairman of Bangladesh's National oil-and-gas corporation, Petrobangla, visited the Moscow offices of Gazprom International. He was in the Russian capital as part of an official delegation from the country, headed up by Prime Minister
During the meeting, Mr. Monsur and Valeriy Gulev, Gazprom International's Managing Director, discussed issues surrounding current cooperation, outlined the interim results produced at this time by the joint project in terms of operational and exploratory drilling in a number of gas deposits in Bangladesh, and voiced their mutual satisfaction with the progress of the work. The preparations to start drilling the first two wells in the Titas and Shrikail deposits are currently in their final stages.
In addition, during the conversation, the parties repeatedly underlined the significance that both countries attach to the development of Russian and Bangladeshi interaction in the energy sector and spoke of its diversification. They also discussed possible options for further collaboration.
In April 2012, Petrobangla and Gazprom International, Gazprom's single operator for upstream foreign projects, signed two drilling agreements. In accordance with the agreements concluded, under contracts with BAPEX and BGFCL/SGFL (PetroBangla subsidiary organisations), the Russian side will design and drill 10 wells in the Titas (four wells) Rashidpur, Semutang, Begumganj, Shrikail and Shahbazpur (two wells) deposits. Their depth shall be from 2900 to 4050 m. Eight wells will be drilled slanted, and two will be vertical. The work will extend over 20 months.
Bangladesh's annual need for natural gas, which is used mainly for power plants and factories for the production of mineral fertilisers, is today estimated to be 21 billion cubic metres. Furthermore, current production is going down and at the moment amounts to around 18 billion cubic metres.
No work on prospecting and exploring new deposits in Bangladesh has been carried out within the last ten years, and in view of this, the country's government has approved a programme to drill new operational wells.