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Scientists Comment on Possible Tibet Oil Reserves

[WTN-L World Tibet Network News. Published by The Canada Tibet Committee. Issue ID: 99/07/22 Compiled by Thubten (Sam) Samdup]

Xinhua news agency, Beijing, in English 1438 gmt 15 Oct 97

Lhasa, 15th October: Chinese scientists think that the Tibet Autonomous Region could follow in the footsteps of the oil-rich Tarim Basin in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region.

After years of oil exploration, potential oilfields have been mapped by the Ministry of Geology and Mineral Resources and the China National Petroleum Corporation in the Qiangtang Basin in northern Tibet.

Thick oil layers have been discovered in the Gangba Basin in southern Tibet on more than 10,000 sq.m. of ground, according to Qiu Dongzhou, of the China Academy of Geological Sciences.

Geologists found the region's first deep oil deposit, with 200 million tons, in the Lhupola Basin, and 1.5 million tons of proven reserves have been found. Geologists have found 6-sq. km. No 1 field, and a major oil formation has been found along the Changliu Spring-Tsony-Baitan Lake Block in the Qiangtang Basin. Many geologists believe that Tibet has favourable geology for oil formations. The strata are of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic periods and similar to oilfields in the Persian Gulf and the Karakorum in Central Asia. Tibet is called "the last and largest oil belt on the continents". Professor Liu Tianyou, of China Geology University, points out that, in keeping with the country's oil industry strategy of "stabilizing the output in eastern oilfields while developing the west", there will be greater exploration in Tibet.

"We are confident that Tibet will become an oil reserve base in the 21st century," he noted.


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