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Saudi Aramco starts Arabian Heavy crude production in Manifa field; 500k bpd by July 2013, 900k bpd by 2014

Saudi Aramco announced the first phase production start-up at the Manifa field in the Persian Gulf, 3 months ahead of schedule and well under the program’s approved budget. The Manifa field’s production capacity is expected to reach 500,000 bpd by July 2013, and is planned to reach its full design capacity of 900,000 bpd of Arabian Heavy crude oil by the end of 2014, while Saudi Aramco’s maximum sustained capacity will be maintained at the level preceding Manifa production.

The Manifa field includes dry-land rigs linked by a total of 41 kilometers of causeways with a number of elevated bridges designed to maintain natural water flow in the Manifa Bay and preserving natural marine nurseries. Four pipelines will connect Manifa to KGP and Ras az-Zour for gas processing and raw power production.

Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining Company (YASREF) Limited, a joint venture with Chinese Petrochemical Corporation (Sinopec), will be able to process up to 400,000 bpd of the Arab Heavy crude oil from Manifa.



I have to wonder: If the Saudis are starting up production of "heavy" crude does it mean they are worried about their capacity to maintain production of light crude? Isn't heavy crude more costly to produce & process into fuel, and if it is why cut into your profits if you've got as much light crude as they claim?


Experts say that to stop climate change at 2C rise, 2/3 of the current reserves must stay in the ground.

The Saudis don't seem to care about this too much.

In the worst case, in 10-20 years these refineries will have to be bombed to shut down (I just don't think the Saudis will shut them down willingly).


Libya showed that Saudi Arabia could not supply more light sweet when ever they want. The Italians wanted to replace the oil they could not get from Libya, the Saudis could not provide it so the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve did. They were paid back in a greater quantity of a heavier grade.

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