Date: 28 October 2019

Gazprom Advances Its Arctic Projects

Russia’s state-run gas producer Gazprom is looking for new hydrocarbon fields on the country’s Arctic shelf. And though investing in this sector is far from being lucrative for Russian energy firms, the state-held giant has no intention to lag behind Rosneft or Novatek in its efforts to put in place Vladimir Putin’s strategy for the development of the Russian Arctic.


By 2023, Russian biggest gas company plans to drill as many as ten offshore exploration and exploratory wells on Russia’s Arctic shelf, or two per year, Director General of Gazprom Geologorazvedka, a company’s subsidiary in charge of exploratory work, Vsevolod Cherepanov told Gazprom corporation magazine. The expected long-term increase in natural gas reserves is more than 1.5 billion tonnes of standard fuel, Cherepanov said. Offshore drilling in the area has begun earlier this year.

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Gazprom controls 11 licenses for geological exploration and production of hydrocarbons in the Kara Sea and five similar in the Barents Sea. Under the terms of the license agreements, the main volumes of geological exploration are supposed to be completed by 2025. The bulk of hydrocarbon resources and reserves within the licensed areas of Gazprom on the shelf of the Arctic and Okhotsk Seas, including the Tazovskaya Bay (located in the Kara Sea between the peninsulas of Yamal and Gydan) that branches off the Gulf of Ob (the largest of the Kara Sea, located at the mouth of the Ob River between the peninsulas of Yamal and Gydan), was estimated as of early 2019 at 28.8 billion tonnes of oil equivalent, of which 27.8 billion is gas (with 70 percent of raw material located in the Arctic offshore fields in the Kara Sea). Recent times have brought the intensification in Gazprom’s exploration efforts in this region of Russia. In 2018, when penetrating two wells along the west coast of the Yamal Peninsula in the Kara Sea, Gazprom identified two new unique fields, named Dinkov and Nyarmeyskoye. After discovering these two on the Arctic shelf, the saturation of Gazprom’s mineral resource base surpassed 100 percent. Between 2017 and 2018, the total rise in recoverable gas resources in the three wells dug in the Kara Sea shelf amounted to 407.8 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas, which is equivalent to the discovery of a unique gas field.

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