Sinopec, FTSI form JV to tap China’s unconventional resources

Sinopec Group has entered into a 15-year joint venture agreement with FTS International (FTSI), Ft. Worth, with the intention of tapping into China’s vast unconventional resources.

The new venture, to be called SinoFTS Petroleum Services Ltd. (SinoFTS) and based in Beijing, is the first oil field services collaboration of its kind between a non-Chinese well completion company and a Chinese national oil company, FTSI said.

FTSI will provide Sinopec with its expertise in hydraulic fracturing, using new equipment that FTSI will manufacture in the US and adapt for the Chinese environment.

Sinopec will own 55% of the JV while FTSI will hold the remainder, and it will serve both Sinopec and other exploration and production companies throughout China.

The JV plans to initially focus on the Sichuan basin, where operations for the initial pressure pumping fleet are expected to begin in 2015. FTSI believes further deployments will occur in basins throughout China.

FTSI describes itself as one of the largest well completion service companies in North America, with 1.6 million hydraulic hp deployed in the major US shale basins.

Last month Sinopec formed a JV with Weatherford International to expand the Chinese company’s upstream business, focusing on China’s shale gas resources.

The company previously signed an agreement with ConocoPhillips for joint research regarding shale gas exploration, development, and production in the Sichuan basin (OGJ Online, Dec. 28, 2012).

The US Energy Information Administration previously estimated that China has 145 trillion cu m of recoverable shale gas resources in the Sichuan and Tarim basins.

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