Saudi Arabian giant Saudi Aramco boosted its gas reserves by almost 4% to 263 trillion cubic feet last year.

Aramco’s annual gas production rose 2.7% to 3 Tcf. Daily gas production averaged 8.3 billion cubic feet per day, a rise of 4.3% from 2007, the company’s annual report said.

The data comes after an Aramco executive told the Reuters news agency that the company plans to raise its non-associated gas processing capacity to 9 Bcfd by 2015 from its current level of 6.2 Bcfd to meet soaring demand for industrial use in the kingdom.

Oil output for 2008 rose by an average 400,000 barrels per day from 2007, Aramco said in its annual review.

Average daily oil production reached 8.9 million bpd in 2008, resulting in a total production of 3.26 billion barrels for the whole year versus 3.11 billion barrels in 2007, according to the figures.

Aramco included in its 2008 review a discovery of Niyashin, a new oilfield and two other gas fields, Arabiyah and Rabib.

Crude exports rose to 2.5 billion barrels in 2008 from 2.407 billion in 2007, the review said.

Asia accounted for 52.7% of the company’s oil exports last year, the US for 20% and Europe 5.2%. In 2007, Asia’s percentage was 52.1%, the US 20.5% and Europe 5.2%.

Saudi Arabia renewed its commitment to boost its oil production capacity to 12.5 million bpd this year to meet future supply needs.

The kingdom pumps just under 8 million bpd in line with Opec agreements to remove 4.2 million bpd from the oil market.

In the report, Aramco revealed its recoverable crude oil and condensate reserves were unchanged at 259.9 billion barrels in 2008.

(Upstream Online)