South East Asia is now preparing for one of the greatest periods of exploration activity in its history. Next to the United States, it will be the second largest area for new well activity in the world. Many are excited about the prospects because of some recent successes and because so little seismic activity has been done throughout the area.
If there is any plateau, it should only be considered as occurring for a brief period and due primarily to the worldwide recession and the lack of capital for investment. This problem has been shared by many other developing countries all over the world. As a result, many energy development plans have not undertaken as planned in South East Asia. However, overall exploration and rig activity has been stable during the last year. The results have been encouraging with finds in the South China Sea and the North West Shelf of Australia.
As a result of the push to develop their own energy sources, these countries will become prime areas for new investment. The energy investment needs will be substantial. Petroleum exploration and development may require as much as $28.2 billion in annual expenditures by 1990. (Ref 1)