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Tapping into Pakistan's Massive Oil and Gas Reserves

Pakistan’s Tribal Areas (FATA) and Frontier Regions (FR) are believed to have massive reserves of oil and natural gas—which Pakistani officials have suddenly become very keen to demonstrate. But this is a highly restive, war-torn area where one right move could make all the difference, and one wrong move could ignite a conflict with irreversible consequences.

For now, the area remains unexplored and it was only in 2008 when Pakistani geologists began to study the area in earnest, with the support of the local authorities in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) and the Frontier Region (FR). The results of this research were collected, processed and digitized in June 2012. The geologists discovered seven new oil and gas seepages during the mapping. The geologists also claim that 11 oil and gas exploration companies have already reserved 16 blocks in Fata.

The potential:

•    Pakistani geologists say Fata in particular is poised to become a “new oil state” whose production could rival Dubai’s in only five years
•    The FR is bursting at the seams with gas, so they say

Here’s what the interest looks like so far:

•    17 companies have initiated operations in Fata/FR (in Khyber, Orakzai, North and South Waziristan, Peshawar, Kohat, Bannu, Tank and DI Khan)
•    Tullow has been active in Pakistan since 1991,…

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