UPI Energy Watch

By ANDREA R. MIHAILESCU, UPI Energy Correspondent  |  March 5, 2008 at 5:14 PM
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Gazprom eyes Iranian investment

Gazprom Chairman Alexei Miller and Iranian Oil Minister Gholamhossein Nozari agreed to jointly develop two or three blocks of the South Pars gas field.

The two sides plan to set up a joint energy company, alongside a third partner country, though no details of which country may participate were revealed.

Miller and Nozari also discussed Gazprom Neft's participation in oil projects in Iran. The two sides are expected to reach a deal in the next two months.

Gazprom is already involved in the development of phases two and three of the South Pars development with a 30 percent interest; France's Total and Malaysia's Petronas hold 40 percent and 30 percent, respectively.

The partners will invest more than $2 billion in the project and expect to achieve a production plateau of 56 million cubic meters per day of gas.


Gazprom to invest $300 million in Kyrgyzstan

Russia's Gazprom plans to invest $300 million in gas exploration in Kyrgyzstan until 2012, according to Kyrgyz Prime Minister Igor Chudinov.

According to Itar-Tass, neither the start date nor any details of the exploration program have been released.

A Gazprom delegation visited Bishkek on Feb. 24 to discuss licenses for two gas fields in southern Kyrgyzstan and Gazprom's participation in infrastructure projects.

The country's 5.7 billion cubic meters of estimated gas reserves are minute in comparison with those of its gas-wealthy neighbors Uzbekistan (1.87 trillion cubic meters), Turkmenistan (2.86 tcm) and Kazakhstan (3 tcm).

In 2005 the International Energy Agency estimated Kyrgyzstan's oil production at 1,486 barrels per day and gas production at 29 million cubic meters annually.

With consumption exceeding production, Kyrgyzstan imported some 13,561 b/d of petroleum products and 821.9 mcm of gas in the same year.

The Kyrgyz government signed a 25-year gas cooperation agreement on May 16, 2003, and in May 2007 another deal on common principles of geological exploration was signed between the two parties.

Gazprom and Kyrgyzgaz agreed to set up a joint venture to explore Kyrgyzstan's hydrocarbon reserves.

Rosneft to invest $1B in Kamchatka shelf

Rosneft said it plans to invest some $1 billion to explore the western part of the Kamchatka shelf, which is located in Russia's Far East.

The investment will make up a small part of Rosneft's expected $24 billion costs for the project's first development stage, which was agreed by local authorities and company representatives on Feb. 19, according to a news report in RIA Novosti.

The company plans to drill two exploratory wells in 2008.

Rosneft holds a 60 percent majority in West Kamchatka Holding, the company managing the project, alongside a consortium led by Korea National Oil Corp. and also comprising GS Caltex Corp., Daewoo International, Hyundai and Kumho Petrochemical, which owns the remaining 40 percent stake in the company.

West Kamchatka Holding's wholly owned subsidiary Kamchatneftegaz is the operator of the project.

The companies involved in the Kamchatka project signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2004, at which time the field's reserves were estimated at 3.7 billion barrels.

In early-2007 KNOC announced the discovery of 10 billion barrels of oil off west Kamchatka, which lies in the Sea of Okhotsk. The discovery could significantly increase previous reserves estimates in the area.


Closing oil prices, Mar. 5, 3 p.m. London

Brent crude oil: $98.15

West Texas Intermediate crude oil: $100.34


(e-mail: energy@upi.com)

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