India’s Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) and British oil major BP have started production from the R Cluster, a ultra-deep-water gas field located in the KG-D6 block offshore India.

The KG-D6 block lies in the Krishna-Godavari basin of the Bay of Bengal on the eastern coast of India.

RIL operates the KG D6 block and owns a 66.67% participating interest in it. The remaining 33.33% participating interest is held by BP.

The block covers an area of 8,100km² and lies in water depths between 700m (2,297ft) and 1,700m (5,577ft).

RIL chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said: “We are proud of our partnership with bp that combines our expertise in commissioning gas projects expeditiously, under some of the most challenging geographical and weather conditions.

“This is a significant milestone in India’s energy landscape, for a cleaner and greener gas-based economy. Through our deep-water infrastructure in the Krishna Godavari basin we expect to produce gas and meet the growing clean energy requirements of the nation.”

Reliance Industries and BP are developing three deepwater gas projects in block KG D6 namely, R Cluster, Satellites Cluster, and MJ.

Located about 60km from the existing KG D6 Control & Riser Platform (CRP) off the Kakinada coast, R Cluster is the first of the three projects to come online.

The Satellites Cluster project is expected to become operational next year and the MJ project is scheduled to come online in 2022.

These three projects are jointly expected to meet more than15% of India’s gas demand by 2023.

BP chief executive Bernard Looney said: “This start-up is another example of the possibility of our partnership with Reliance, bringing the best of both companies to help meet India’s rapidly expanding energy needs.

“Growing India’s own production of cleaner-burning gas to meet a significant portion of its energy demand, these three new KG D6 projects will support the country’s drive to shape and improve its future energy mix.”

In April 2018, BP and RIL sanctioned the ‘Satellite cluster’ project, the second phase of the integrated KG-D6 development.