Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New Zealand gas reserves grow

"The [New Zealand gas] supply outlook looks better than it has for more than a decade," McDouall Stuart researcher John Kidd told the Petroleum Conference in Auckland yesterday.

Between 2003 and 2007, total reserves increased from 1500 petajoules to more than 2100 petajoules, Mr Kidd said. That gave the country 14.5 years of supply, compared with an average of 11 years for Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development countries. Furthermore, reserves were increasing at a compound annual rate of almost 10 percent, equal to about 170 petajoules a year.

In other news today:

* The Raukumara basin, off the North Island's east coast, is likely to be the next area opened up to oil explorers, says Associate Energy Minister Harry Duynhoven. There were positive signs that oil would be found in the basin, he told the Petroleum Conference.

* In the latest survey of readers of the Bank of New Zealand's Weekly Overview, 62.3 percent of respondents said they expected economic conditions to deteriorate. The survey findings, published yesterday, were the worst since February 2006.

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