ABU DHABI Ñ Saudi Arabia has begun pumping oil at two new fields as
part of an effort to expand the kingdom's energy capacity.
Saudi officials said the pumping of the two wells at Abu Safah and Qatif
began three months ahead of schedule. They said Abu Safah contains 6.1
billion barrels of oil and Qatif contains 8.4 billion barrels of oil.
In all, the pumping of the two fields could boost the kingdom's oil
capacity by 800,000 barrels per day by the end of 2004. Abu Safah is
offshore while Qatif has been onshore.
Officials said the new well at Qatif would be the first in the kingdom
to produce Arab Light crude oil by blending Extra Light and Arab Medium.
Saudi Arabia has reported daily oil production of up to 10 million barrels.