Shell began drilling for shale gas in southeast Turkey in early September as the country hopes to discover an indigenous source of energy and reduce its dependence on natural gas imports. Shell launched its exploration program in the Saribugday-1 field near Diyarbakir in an area estimated by Turkey to hold as much as 13 trillion cubic meters (tcm), of which 1.8 tcm may be recoverable. An agreement between Shell and Turkish Petroleum (TPAO) will give 70% of production from the Saribugday field to TPAO and the balance to Shell.

ExxonMobil is reported to be negotiating with TPAO for a shale gas exploration license, and in late August Canada’s Anatolia Energy announced that it had spudded a well in the Dadas shale formation in the Antep license area in southeastern Turkey (MEES, 27 August). (CONTINUED - 323 WORDS)