The national oil and gas company of Pakistan, OGDCL, plans to invest more than $800m on developing new projects to meet growing domestic demand, Bloomberg reported.

The company will drill a minimum of 51 wells in 2009, compared with 31 wells in 2008.

Of the 51 wells, nine will be in Baluchistan region, where the company was forced to suspend work six years ago due to political unrest.

Pakistan’s government plans to spend $15bn in five years to develop its oil and natural gas industry in order to decrease its reliance on imports and meet domestic demand.

The country expects domestic demand of oil and gas to double by 2020.