June 26 (UPI) -- The head of Russian oil company Rosneft said there were promising oil opportunities in the Arctic region, about a week after declaring a regional discovery.
Rosneft said last week that preliminary data from three core samples from a well in the northern Laptev Sea indicated a new oil field has been discovered. The company said the region holds at least a dozen promising reservoirs.
Igor Sechin, the head of the company, said a number of new oil-bearing structures are emerging.
"We have identified a number of promising structures there," he was quoted by Russian news agency Tass as saying.
Russian officials have focused the economic sights on opportunities in the Far North. Regional governors are looking to economic "backbone zones" in the area to advance the development agenda.
Novatek, the largest private natural gas company in Russia, leads a liquefied natural gas project aimed at supplying the markets in the Asian-Pacific. It controls 60 percent of the project in the Arctic north of Russia, alongside French energy company Total and the China National Petroleum Corp.
The Yamal LNG project has the capacity to produce about 16.5 million tons of natural gas and exports could target consumers in the Far East. Up to 16 ice-class carriers will be designated to ship LNG year-round to global consumers.
Sechin said in April more drilling is planned next year in the Arctic reaches of the Barents Sea "and [we] will continue our work in the eastern Arctic."
Rosneft holds about two dozen license areas on the Arctic shelf. The company points to industry experts who suggest the region could account for as much as 30 percent of Russia's total oil production by 2050.